Birmingham bids fond farewell to The Big Sleuth

The Big Sleuth

Birmingham’s latest animal-themed summer fundraising campaign – The Big Sleuth – comes to an end this weekend.

Throughout the summer, more than 100 brightly coloured bears have been sited at various locations throughout the city.

Bearspotters have been encouraged to follow the main trail and identify as many of the sculptures as possible.

But before they depart for their new homes, the bears are being brought together one last time at a special Farewell Weekend, taking place over the weekend October 6-8.

The bears will stand together at Birmingham’s Eastside City Park, next to Millennium Point, before being auctioned off at Thinktank on Thursday October 12 to raise funds for Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity.

The Big Sleuth, presented by Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity and creative producers Wild in Art, has captured the public’s imagination in the same way that The Big Hoot campaign did two years ago.

On that occasion, it was a collection of brightly decorated owls that were the focus of attention; the subsequent auction going on to raise more than £500,000 for the hospital.

The Farewell Weekend will offer people one last chance to have their picture taken with their favourite bear or spot any of the sculptures they may have missed during the campaign.

The event is being supported by craft stalls, entertainment, face painting, official Big Sleuth merchandise and more.

Open to the public on Friday October 6 between 2-6pm, Saturday October 7, 10am-6pm and Sunday October 8 October, 10am-4pm, tickets are limited and are expected to sell out quickly.

Louise McCathie, Director of Fundraising at Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity, said: “We can’t bear-lieve that after months of sleuthing fun, our bears are going to be prowling off our streets and The Big Sleuth is coming to an end.

“We’ve been absolutely overwhelmed with the response our bears have had over the past few months and how much joy they’ve brought to tourists and residents alike.

“We’re delighted to offer the public one last chance to see the bears. The Farewell Weekend will be a great event with all the main trail bears standing together in one giant sleuth. There will be a great festival atmosphere, for all the family, with artists, crafts, entertainment, food and much more.”

Tickets for the Farewell Weekend can be purchased from and cost £5 for adults and £3 for four to 16 year olds, with under fours free. All profits from the ticket sales will go to Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity.