The Big Hop Trail auction achieves hare-raising amount for Clan Cancer Support

Charles Hanson

THE BIG Hop Trail 2023 has raised £202,600 at auction for Clan Cancer Support.  

All forty large hare and five specially commissioned leveret sculptures went under the hammer with Bargain Hunt presenter Charles Hanson at the Music Hall, Aberdeen last night (Monday, September 18).  

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The Big Hop Trail, sponsored by Hellmann Worldwide Logistics, was delivered by Clan Cancer Support over a nine-week period this summer, with more than 240,000 participants collecting the hare sculptures across the north-east, Moray, Orkney and Shetland.  

In partnership with Wild in Art, the trail aimed to raise awareness for Clan Cancer Support which runs six support centres and additional outreach programmes across Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire, Moray, Orkney and Shetland and generate vital funding for its services.  

Fiona Fernie, Clan Cancer Support’s CEO, said: “Clan Cancer Support will mark it’s 40th anniversary this month and we could not have asked for a better birthday present than this. We are so grateful to everyone who came along to raise a paddle for the chance to own one of these beautiful sculptures.”  

Sales came from bidders in the room and online, with The Gothenburg Great sculpture by local artist Lesley McKenzie and sponsored by CCDP LLP Chartered Building Services Engineers raising the highest individual bid on the night.  

The sculpture, signed by Aberdeen Football Club legends Willie Miller, Neil Simpson and Jim Leighton was sold for £15,000.  

Shelagh Swanson’s Mr Greenglass sculpture also secured a £15,000 bid from multiple buyers in the room who contributed towards the final amount, with the sculpture gifted to the charity to display at Clan House, Aberdeen.  

In addition to the sculptures featured on the trail, two blank leveret sculptures were sold and a 6ft blank hare sculpture raised £5,000 with Aberdeen based artist, Lesley McKenzie offering to work with the buyer to commission a design for free.  

Fiona Fernie added: “These hares have not only enabled us to raise a significant sum, they have brought colour and community spirit to the areas they were based and increased awareness of Clan’s services across the region.   

“The auction was the culmination of 18 months of hard work and I’d like to take this opportunity to thank everyone in making the trail, Farewell Weekend and auction possible. From the Wild in Art team, artists, sponsors, media partners, schools and local businesses to our incredible volunteers, team at Clan and of course the general public who embraced the project in their droves this summer.  

“The money raised from the trail will help us provide vital services for people of all ages who have been impacted by a diagnosis, giving them the opportunity to access support and to build the resilience needed to navigate their cancer journey.” 

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