Telegraph Column by Crystal Peaks’ Clare Farmer: Sculpting positivity and friendship

Here at Crystal Peaks we are delighted to be sponsoring one elephant of our own as part of the Children’s Hospital’s Herd of Sheffield campaign and hosting another.

As soon as I found out that we were going to be involved in this exciting project I couldn’t wait to see which artists were taking part and who we would be choosing. 

I found the background story of Sheffield’s famous Lizzie the elephant really interesting too .

It’s hard to imagine an elephant wandering the streets of Sheffield but now we have 58 of them.

Tom J Newell’s elephant, The Beat Goes On, was an obvious choice for us as he’s a local artist and we loved the bold design of his sculpture.

It’s a striking contrast to the other elephant you’ll find at Crystal Peaks, Sue Webber’s Blossom.

It was lovely to see the progress of the elephants behind the scenes as the artists brought their individual visions to life.

We held a few elephant craft workshops at Crystal Peaks for children throughout the summer holidays where they had the opportunity to decorate their own mini elephants and colour in a huge colouring sheet of Tom’s creation.

When the trail launched, two teams of us from the centre embarked on a challenge to visit all the elephants on the trail in one day using just public transport.

My team completed the journey in just short of 12 hours.

It certainly was a challenge, but such a fun day out, and the only real problem we had was when we arrived in Hillsborough.

We struggled to find the elephant as it is hidden from view in the park’s walled gardens. 

A group of schoolchildren were coming out of the library and their teacher – who had heard us being interviewed on radio – asked us how many we had found and I explained that we had seen 45 sculptures but were stuck on finding number 46.

The whole class shouted back ‘It’s in there’, pointing us to the garden.

It was great to hear such positive feedback as we were making our way around Sheffield.

It really proved what a friendly city we are.

The herd has been such a positive project for both Crystal Peaks and the whole of Sheffield.

It’s been wonderful to see people out and about searching for the elephants and getting photos.

And of course they’ve been raising money for the Children’s Hospital at the same time.