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Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail raises £883,000 for Tayside Children’s Hospital

Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail, Dundee’s largest ever mass-participation public art event has ended on a high raising £883,000 for The ARCHIE Foundation’s Tayside Children’s Hospital Appeal.  The funds will go towards creating a brand new twin operating theatre suite in the children’s hospital at Ninewells.

The one-of-a-kind project, which brought over 70 individually designed Oor Wullie sculptures to the streets of Dundee and across Scotland, culminated in an international auction yesterday evening, Tuesday 13th September, at the Dundee Rep Theatre where local businesses, individuals and sponsors bid on their favourite sculptures.

Oor Original, a design based on the classic Oor Wullie character, proved to be the most popular Oor Wullie sculpture of all, selling for £50,000 to businessman and The ARCHIE Foundation patron Garreth Wood and being the highest bid of night.

Minecraft, an Oor Wullie sculpture inspired by the popular game, sold for £34,000 to an online bidder after a nail-biting bidding war. Several sculptures were bought by online bidders with over 100 registering with I-Bidder from all over the world in the run up to the auction.

Tangerine Terror, an Oor Wullie sculpture inspired by Dundee United FC, was bought for £16,000 by the football club’s chairman, Stephen Thompson.

Proceedings were kicked off by a special ‘Wullie’s Bucket Trail Auction’ poem written and read by Morris Heggie. Executive Chairman of DC Thomson Publishing, Ellis Watson, then spoke of the incredible success of the Bucket Trail for Dundee and appealed to the audience to get bidding. Ellis was followed by Dawn Cowie, an ambassador for The ARCHIE Foundation who explained the amazing work that The ARCHIE Foundation do to make a difference to sick children, having been helped by the charity when she was seriously ill as a child.

Charity organisers The ARCHIE Foundation, along with partners Wild In Art and DC Thomson, have been working tirelessly for many months to bring the project to fruition, and all this culminated in last night’s crucial auction. This followed a fantastic Farewell Event in Dundee’s Slessor Gardens last weekend which saw over 20,000 people visit to grab one final glimpse of the sculptures before the auction.

Cassie Thompson, Head of Fundraising for The ARCHIE Foundation, commented:

“We have been overwhelmed by the incredible amount raised at our special auction and the generosity of so many people who bid here in Dundee and online from around the world. Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail has captured the hearts of the people of Dundee and, as organisers, we are proud to have been able to bring the public art project, along with out wonderful partners Wild In Art and DC Thomson, to the city over the summer.

“All proceeds from the auction go towards The ARCHIE Foundation’s Tayside Children’s Hospital Appeal, making a real difference to the lives of sick children and their families across the area. This appeal is the reason that Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail came about and we couldn’t be more delighted by the result of yesterday’s auction.”

Andrew Thomson, Chairman of DC Thomson, added:

““We are absolutely delighted to have been able to play a part in this hugely successful initiative.  The Oor Wullie sculptures were well loved by everyone in Dundee whilst they were on tour, and the incredible amount of money raised last night will go a long way to supporting local children through the Archie Foundation at Tayside Children’s Hospital.”

Andy Lothian, CEO of Insights, successfully bid on ‘Oor Wai O’ Spikin’, the Oor Wullie sculpture that his company sponsored. Andy commented:

“The ARCHIE Foundation’s Oor Wullie Bucket Trail encompasses so many things that I love about Dundee; charity, creativity and community. We were delighted our sponsored sculpture, titled ‘Oor Wai ‘O’ Spikin’, had temporary residence in Technology Park. The sculpture, who is adorned in our organisational purpose statement translated into conversational Dundonian spelling, will remind everyone who passes through our doors to ‘Git ta ken yersel, git ta ken ithirs and dae guid in the world.’”

For further information about Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail, visit www.oorwulliebuckettrail.com

Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail auction aims to raise thousands for Tayside Children’s Hospital

As Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail, Dundee’s largest ever public art event, draws to a close after 10 stunning weeks of mischief and capers in the City of Discovery and across Scotland, all eyes are now drawn to the crucial auction.

Taking place on September 13th at the Dundee Rep Theatre, all 70 individually designed Oor Wullie sculptures will be auctioned to the highest bidder, all to raise funds to create a brand new twin operating theatre paediatric surgical suite for the Tayside Children’s Hospital at Ninewells.

Charity organisers, The ARCHIE Foundation, along with partners Wild In Art and DC Thomson, are encouraging potential bidders, from local businesses and sponsors to individuals who have fallen in love with the array of intricately designed and bespoke Oor Wullie sculptures, to register to bid.

While those bidding on the night will use the traditional ‘paddle in the air’ to stake their claim on a sculpture, the auctioneers, ANM Group from the Thainstone Centre in Inverurie and stars of BBC One show, The Mart, will also be running the auction using I-Bidder, a system which enables people to bid online from anywhere in the world and offers live streaming of the auction. Oor Wullie will be reaching a global audience and some of the sculptures will potentially be preparing for some international travel.

Proceedings will be launched by DC Thomson CEO, Ellis Watson, followed by an insight into the work of The ARCHIE Foundation and the plans for how the money raised will be used to help sick children in Tayside through the The ARCHIE Foundation’s Tayside Children’s Hospital Appeal.

Cassie Thompson, Head of Fundraising, commented:

“As Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail comes to a close, we are incredibly proud, as organisers along with our fantastic project partners Wild In Art and DC Thomson, to have been able to bring a project of this scale to Dundee and across Scotland which has been enjoyed by many thousands of people.

“We are now looking forward to the auction next Tuesday and are appealing to businesses and individuals to make sure they don’t miss out on the opportunity to bid on their favourite sculpture and be in with a chance of being a permanent owner of one of the Oor Wullies. All proceeds from the auction go towards The ARCHIE Foundation’s Tayside Children’s Hospital Appeal, making a real difference to the lives of sick children and their families across the area. This appeal is the reason for Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail and we hope that many people who have been captivated by this summer’s Bucket Trail won’t miss out on the chance to be part of this special auction.”

Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail has also had support from local famous faces, including Lorraine Kelly, who helped come up with the design for a Dundee United themed Oor Wullie sculpture, Tangerine Terror, which was sponsored by Ninja Kiwi. Lorraine said:

“I’ve been delighted to support such a wonderful initiative for the City of Dundee and to have been invited to design a sculpture. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed seeing Tangerine Terror, inspired by my favourite football team, come to life as well as all the other beautifully designed sculptures spread around the city. Thousands of people have enjoyed Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail, including my husband who cycled around all 55 sculptures in Dundee!
“It’s now down to the people of Dundee to make a difference to the children of Tayside by bidding on their favourite Oor Wullie sculptures. It is fantastic that, whether you’re at the auction in Dundee, or on the other side of the world watching proceedings on the live stream, you can bid and be part of something really special.”
Many local groups have begun crowdfunding initiatives to be able to bid for an Oor Wullie sculptures including a group from NHS Tayside, an Arbroath community campaign to purchase a sculpture for the area and a push in Broughty Ferry to keep an R.N.L.I themed sculpture in the town. The Ninewell Hospital campaign alone has raised over £6,000.

Phil Mulholland, Managing Director at Piperdam Golf and Leisure resort, is just one of the local businesses looking forward to the auction. Phil commented:

“Piperdam is delighted to have been invited along to participate in the auction evening of the now infamous Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail, which has done wonders to raise awareness of The ARCHIE Foundation’s Tayside Children’s Hospital Appeal.

He continued:

“It’s now time for local businesses and individuals, who have all hopefully enjoyed and completed the Bucket Trail, to get the chance to have their very own Oor Wullie and help raise those crucial funds to help children across Tayside. I, along with my team here at Piperdam, look forward to seeing and hearing the bids reach record levels for this fantastic cause.”

For further details about how to bid at the auction on September 13th, visit http://www.oorwulliebuckettrail.com/auction/

Tickets for the auction evening are available but there is a limited number. If you’re interested in bidding at the auction please email: cassie@archiefoundation.org.uk or phone 07957 667618 for further enquiries.

Don’t miss chance to say ‘cheerio’ to Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail

Organisers of Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail, Dundee’s largest ever public art event, are urging members of the public not to miss out on a final opportunity to see every single Oor Wullie sculpture in one place at a very special Farewell Gathering in Slessor Gardens from Friday 9th-Sunday 11th September.

A ticketed event, over 100 Oor Wullie sculptures, including the 55 that have spent the past 10 weeks in the city charming tens of thousands of people locally and from all over the world, will be on display. The travelling Oor Wullie sculptures which popped up in cities up and down the country will also be there, as well as the miniature sculptures designed and painted by primary school pupils all around the city. The miniature sculptures will be returned to school libraries after the event ends.

Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail has been taking Dundee, and the rest of Scotland, by storm, with visitors as far afield as Australia visiting the array of intricately designed and painted sculptures which hit the city’s streets at the end of June. Thousands of selfies have been taken and shared on social media, extending the reach of the Bucket Trail and getting people talking about the one-of-a-kind project, which has was launched to raise money for The ARCHIE Foundation’s Tayside Children’s Hospital Appeal.

Charity organisers The ARCHIE Foundation, along with partners Wild in Art and DC Thomson, hope to attract 10,000 to 15,000 to the Farewell Gathering over the three days. More than 9,000 tickets have already been sold. Tickets can be purchased from the Dundee City Box Office for £4 for an adult ticket, £2 for children and £10 for families.

After the Farewell Gathering, on 13th September all of the Oor Wullie sculptures will be sold at an international auction at the Dundee Rep Theatre where businesses, individuals, enthusiastic Oor Wullie fans and even those overseas can bid remotely through iBidder for the chance to call their favourite sculpture their own. All proceeds from the auction and Farewell Gathering are going to The ARCHIE Foundation’s appeal to raise funds to create a brand new twin operating theatre paediatric surgical suite for the Tayside Children’s Hospital at Ninewells.

Cassie Thompson, Head of Fundraising at The ARCHIE Foundation, commented:

“Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail has been a bigger hit than we could have dreamed of and we are incredibly proud, as organisers, to have been able to have brought a project of this scale, along with our wonderful partners Wild In Art and DC Thomson, to Dundee. The project really has captured the public’s imagination and celebrated art in such a fun and creative way. That’s why Oor Wullie deserves a great farewell party.

“As the auction approaches, we are appealing to businesses and individuals to make sure they don’t miss out on the opportunity to bid on their favourite sculpture and be in with a chance of being a permanent owner of one of the Oor Wullies. All proceeds from the auction go towards The ARCHIE Foundation’s Tayside Children’s Hospital Appeal, making a real difference to the lives of sick children and their families across the area.”

To find out more about Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail and Farewell Gathering, visit www.oorwulliebuckettrail.com

For further details about how to bid at the auction on September 13th, visit http://www.oorwulliebuckettrail.com/auction/

Fundraising effort set to keep Oor Wullie sculpture in Broughty Ferry

Oor Lifesaver, an R.N.L.I themed sculpture from Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail, is taking to the sea today alongside his crew members to appeal to the local community to help raise the money to keep him located in Broughty Ferry, his home over the summer.

Ewan Philp of Broughty Ferry lifeboat station has set up a JustGiving page to raise money to bid for the sculpture, sponsored  by The Broughty Ferry Traders Association,  at the upcoming Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail auction at the Dundee Rep on September 13th when all 70 of the Oor Wullie sculptures will be sold.

All of the money raised to pay for the sculpture will go to The ARCHIE Foundation’s Tayside Children’s Hospital Appeal. Any surplus funds will be split evenly between The ARCHIE Foundation and the R.N.L.I. So far the JustGiving fundraising campaign has raised over £3,500. Organisers are hoping to raise £10,000 ahead of the auction in under two weeks time.

Oor Lifesaver, dressed as an R.N.L.I lifeboat man complete with the poignant message ‘RIP Mona’ etched into his bucket, a tribute to those lost during a callout in Broughty Ferry in 1959, has been lovingly looked after throughout the summer by the Broughty Ferry Lifeboat crew and many people from the local area want to see the character become a permanent fixture within the community and the lifeboat station.

Ewan Philp, a crewman for the lifeboat as well as committee member of The Broughty Ferry Traders Association commented:

“It has been wonderful to sponsor this Oor Wullie sculpture, commissioned and hand painted by local artist Fiona Hay, who has done a fantastic job of replicating one of the Broughty Ferry lifeboat crew, wearing all the same gear.

Ewan continued:

“We have become very fond of him over the summer and have set up our JustGiving crowdfunding page to try and help Oor Lifesaver remain in the Ferry while raising money for a fantastic cause. So many people have helped to fundraise to keep our Oor Wullie here, with local schools, businesses and pubs all getting ‘on-board’ with raising money. Fingers crossed we can raise enough to win him when we bid at the auction on September 13th.”

To make a donation visit:

https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/lifeboatmanwullie

For further information about Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail and the upcoming auction visit www.oorwulliebuckettrail.com

Army inspired Oor Wullie visits Weeping Window during national tour

An army inspired Oor Wullie has made a special visit to the Weeping Window at The Black Watch Castle & Museum at Balhousie Castle. Sudger Wullie is one of ten sculptures from Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail, Dundee’s largest ever mass-participation public art event, who have been on a national tour of Scotland, spending this week in the City of Perth.

Sudger Wullie, designed by artist Lesley D McKenzie, dropped in to the museum today, Friday 5th August to see the cascade of several thousand handmade ceramic poppies to commemorate 100 years since the First World War. The dramatic sculptures, created by artist Paul Cummins and designer Tom Piper, are being specially presented at The Black Watch Castle & Museum until Sunday 25th September, 2016.

Oor Wullie already has a historic connection to the museum as the Black Watch was the wee scamp’s Uncle Wattie’s regiment in the comic stories.  Oor Wullie’s very own tartan, designed in 2010, took inspiration from the Black Watch with the red from the hackle on the regiment’s bonnets having been incorporated into the tartan. Tartan Wullie, another Oor Wullie sculpture which is sponsored by Visit Scotland, features the iconic character’s official tartan also.

Launching in the City of Discovery in June, Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail has introduced 55 sculptures, all individually designed and painted by an array of local and international artists, to the streets of Dundee and will be in place throughout the summer to raise money for The ARCHIE Foundation’s Tayside Children’s Hospital Appeal.

Neil Cooney, Project Manager

“It has been incredible to see how popular the national tour has been during Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail. Every city the touring Oor Wullies have visited has offered a very warm welcome and many people have come to see our intrepid sculptures to enjoy a bit of the magic that is going on in Dundee. It is lovely to be able to link up with organisations such as The Black Watch Castle & Museum to celebrate Oor Wullie’s many connections to the area and people all over the world.”

The national tour has already visited Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Stirling and, after leaving Perth, will travel to Inverness and St Andrews before finally arriving back in Dundee for the final few weeks of the Bucket Trail.

At the end of the trail, all the sculptures will be sold at an international auction in at the Dundee Rep Theatre on September 13th where people will be able to bid from anywhere in the world. All proceeds are going to The ARCHIE Foundation’s appeal to raise funds to create a brand new twin operating theatre paediatric surgical suite for the Tayside Children’s Hospital at Ninewells.

Oor Wullie gets ready to ‘play’ at Perth gaming exhibition

Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail is arriving in Perth next week as the mass-participation public art event continues its national tour by visiting the city’s Player: Videogame Interaction from Atari to Toys to Life exhibition at Perth Museum & Art Gallery.

A group of mischievous Oor Wullie sculptures, including Minecraft Wullie, will be ready to ‘play’ at Culture Perth & Kinross’ interactive gaming exhibition and open to the public from Tuesday 2nd – Sunday 7th August.

Launching in the City of Discovery at the end of June, Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail has introduced over 55 sculptures, all individually designed and painted by an array of local and international artists, to the streets of Dundee and will be in place throughout the summer to raise money for The ARCHIE Foundation’s Tayside Children’s Hospital Appeal.

Minecraft Wullie, designed by 4J Studios and sponsored by UNESCO City of Design Dundee, will take pride of place at the interactive exhibition, which celebrates the latest trends in digital play and the evolution of videogames. Developed in conjunction with another Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail sponsor, the University of Abertay, the gaming exhibition was launched earlier this month by 4J Studios Chairman Chris van der Kuyl, who pioneered the creation of Minecraft for console use.

The exhibition encourages gamers of all ages to have a go on consoles through the ages, including the seminal Space Invaders, the Nintendo Gameboy and the Sega Megadrive. Visitors can take a trip back through time and explore iconic games from Duck Hunt, Sega Rally to the award-winning concept-game Line Wobbler.

Helen Smout, Chief Executive of Culture Perth & Kinross, commented:

“We are incredibly excited to welcome a collection of Oor Wullie sculptures to Perth Museum and Art Gallery and are especially excited to be home to Minecraft Wullie over the next week, who we are sure will feel right at home at our interactive Player: Videogame Interaction from Atari to Toys to Life exhibition. It is fantastic to be able to link a relatively modern form of play like gaming with a character like Oor Wullie, who has entertained people, young and old, for generations.”

A further three Oor Wullie sculptures will be placed around the Museum and Art Gallery and six more individually and uniquely designed Oor Wullie sculptures will be located in the City’s St John’s Shopping Centre from Monday 1st August and for the duration of the week, which has already seen them visit Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Stirling. After leaving Perth, the tour will travel to Inverness and St Andrews before finally arriving back in Dundee for the final few weeks of the trail.

Cassie Thompson, Head of Fundraising for The ARCHIE Foundation, commented:

“As organisers, we are very excited to be able to take Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail on a tour across Scotland and be able to bring the excitement to our next stop – Perth. An incredible amount of work has gone into this project, which is all to help raise money for The ARCHIE Foundation’s Tayside Children’s Hospital Appeal.”

At the end of the trail, on Tuesday 13th September, all the sculptures will be sold at an auction at the Dundee Rep, with all proceeds going to The ARCHIE Foundation’s appeal to raise funds to create a brand new twin operating theatre paediatric surgical suite for the Tayside Children’s Hospital at Ninewells.

To take on Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail, visit www.oorwulliebuckettrail.com

For further information about the work of The ARCHIE Foundation, visit www.archiefoundationhome.org.uk

To find out more about the exhibition visit www.playpk.co.uk – Entry to the exhibition is £3 for adults, £2 for concessions and £10 for a family ticket (two adults, two children).

Oor Wullie’s bucket is signed by golfing greats at Senior Open Championship

Oor Wullie has been making friends at this year’s Senior Open Championship at Carnoustie Golf Links with 28 of the professional golfers signing Oor Golfer, to help raise money for The ARCHIE Foundation’s Tayside Children’s Hospital Appeal.

Oor Golfer is one of 55 sculptures from Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail, Dundee’s largest ever mass participation public art event, and is sponsored by Carnoustie Golf Links where he has been visited by many people, from children to seasoned golfers. Signatures came from an array of famous golfers including Colin Montgomerie, Ian Woosnam, Tom Watson and Sam Torrence, with each signing his trusty bucket.

Many also had their photo taken with the iconic character, perhaps seeing Oor Golfer as a potential lucky charm for the weekend’s competition.

It is hoped that Oor Golfer will prove as popular as the Golfin Dolphin, a sculpture from Aberdeen’s Wild Dolphin Trail in 2014. Golfin Dolphin was signed by the golfers at the Scottish Open at Royal Aberdeen and eventually sold at auction for £55,000 – the highest bid of all the dolphin sculptures.

Karen Perrie from Carnoustie Golf Links commented:RSCN0527 - Copy

“Carnoustie Golf Links is delighted to be a sponsor of Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail and support such a worthy cause. As we were hosting the Senior Open this year, we thought it was an ideal opportunity to try and get some of the professional golfers to sign the sculpture, especially as the signed Golfin Dolphin in Aberdeen raised so much more money at auction two years ago. We are hopeful that Oor Golfer will do the same.

“As we have so many visitors from all over the world who might not know the Oor Wullie character, we requested an original Oor Wullie, but dressed in golf clothing. We were thrilled that illustrator Peter Davidson designed him for us. It is great to be able to bring some of the Bucket Trail magic to the Senior Open Championship and we hope the public this weekend and throughout the summer will enjoy Oor Golfer as much as we have.”

Oor Golfer was created collaboratively, designed by Peter Davidson, the current Oor Wullie illustrator, painted by Gordon Henry, a painter from Aberdeen, the golf bag was sculpted by Roddy Mathieson and the wire hat knitted by Elena Costella.

Charity Organisers The ARCHIE Foundation are hoping that the signatures will help Oor Golfer fetch an impressive price at an auction at the end of the trail in September where all of the Oor Wullie sculpture will be sold, with the proceeds going to The ARCHIE Foundation’s appeal to raise funds to create a brand new twin operating theatre paediatric surgical suite for the Tayside Children’s Hospital at Ninewells.

To find out more about Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail, visit www.oorwulliebuckettrail.com

Oor Wullie hitches a lift with Barnetts Volkswagen

Barnetts Volkswagen has celebrated its sponsorship of a sculpture on Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail, the region’s largest mass participation public art event, by introducing a very special passenger to its fleet of courtesy cars over the summer months.
After adding some eye-catching Oor Wullie branding to their cars, the Dundee car dealership is asking members of the public to keep their eyes peeled for the mischievous wee boy beaming out from the cars’ paint work.

Barnetts Volkswagen is one of over 50 sponsors joining Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail this summer and organisers The ARCHIE Foundation, alongside DC Thomson and Wild in Art, are urging businesses not to miss out on the chance to be part of the one-of-a-kind project, with just over three weeks left to sponsor an Oor Wullie sculpture before the sculptures descend upon the area on June 27th.

Each Oor Wullie sculpture will be placed in and around Dundee for 10 weeks during the summer for people to seek out. At the end of the trail, in September, all the sculptures will be sold at a special auction in Dundee, with proceeds going to the ARCHIE Foundation’s Tayside Appeal to raise funds to create a brand new twin operating theatre and paediatric surgical suite for the Tayside Children’s Hospital at Ninewells.

Jim Brown, Managing Director of Barnetts Volkswagen, commented:

“As sponsors of Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail, Barnetts Volkswagen is delighted to support The ARCHIE Foundation and be part of what is set to be an incredible event across Tayside throughout the summer. Our chosen design still remains a secret, but we have worked closely with former DC Thomson artist, John Barrie to create a design for our fleet of courtesy cars and they are looking really eye-catching. It is great to be able to offer some additional support to the project and we hope the public will keep their eyes peeled for Oor Wullie on the roads as well as on the Bucket Trail.”

Neil Cooney, Project Manager of Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail, added:

“With less than four weeks until Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail gets under way, there is still time for any final sponsors to be part of this very special public art event and we urge businesses to get involved and get in touch. By becoming a sponsor you will be helping us to create an unforgettable event for the City of Dundee and beyond, as well as help to raise crucial funds for the ARCHIE Foundation’s Tayside Appeal.”

To find out more about Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail, visit www.oorwulliebuckettrail.com

To discuss sponsorship, contact Neil Cooney on 07960162223 or neil@archiefoundation.org.uk

For further information about Barnetts Volkswagen, visit http://www.barnettsmotorgroup.co.uk/volkswagen

For further information about the work of The ARCHIE Foundation, visit www.archiefoundationhome.org.uk

Artist Francis Boag paints a contemporary Oor Wullie for Bucket Trail

Those looking for a sneaky peek of another Oor Wullie sculpture can catch one of Scotland’s most recognised contemporary artists, Francis Boag, as he puts the finishing golden touches to his Oor Wullie sculpture at Fraser Gallery St Andrews on Saturday 14th May.

Donning an abundance of vibrant colour and texture, the Oor Wullie sculpture is in the final stages of his transformation. On Saturday, Francis will add some extra special gold-leaf goldfish to complete his design of Scotland’s favourite son, who is one of over 50 Oor Wullie sculptures forming this summer’s Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail, Tayside’s largest mass participation public art event, all to raise money for Tayside Children’s Hospital.

Born and raised in Dundee and studying at Dundee’s Duncan of Jordanstone, the Tayside project is especially close to home for Francis, who spent many years as an Art Teacher in Dundee and Perth before going on to be Head of Art at Aberdeen Grammar School. He became a full-time Artist in 2001 and his paintings can now be found in an increasing number of private and public collections across the world.

Francis, along with Bucket Trail organisers The ARCHIE Foundation and partners Wild in Art and DC Thomson, are encouraging visitors to pop down to Fraser Gallery St Andrews to catch a glimpse of the Oor Wullie sculpture.

Speaking about his involvement in the Bucket Trail, Francis commented:

“Like most children of my generation, I was an avid reader of comics and was a ‘well-kent’ face at my local newsagents in Lochee, spending my pocket money on all the great comic books. The Oor Wullie strip was always the first page I’d turn to in The Sunday Post and, being someone who spent hours drawing, they were a big inspiration growing up – I just didn’t expect to be on quite as intimate terms with him!”

He continued:

“We’ve been spending a lot of time in each other’s company, as coat after coat has been carefully applied to every nook and cranny. I’ve treated him with the same care and attention I give all of my paintings and I hope people enjoy the same aesthetic qualities of colour and texture as they would if they were looking at a painting hanging on a gallery wall.

“I’ve got a few final touches to do and will be adding some 18-carat gold-leaf signature goldfish – only the best for Oor Wullie of course! I’d love to see people’s reaction, so look forward to welcoming people to the Fraser Gallery on Saturday.”

Suzanne Scott, Artist Coordinator for Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail also commented:

“It’s been fantastic to have Francis on board to take us on his artistic journey with this Oor Wullie sculpture. We have an incredible range of artists and designers taking part in this amazing project and the Bucket Trail promises to be full of eclectic and exciting sculptures. We can’t wait for people to get involved!”

The unique project aims to raise crucial funds for The ARCHIE Foundation’s Tayside appeal to raise two million pounds to help create a brand new twin operating surgical suite for the Tayside Children’s Hospital at Ninewells.

To find out more about Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail, visit www.oorwulliebuckettrail.com

Enjoy a Tea Cake (or two!) as Tunnock’s join Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail

Fancy enjoying a delicious free Tunnock’s Tea Cake and donating your wrapper to a good cause?

This week (from Monday 11th April), Fife artist and Tunnock’s Tea Cake enthusiast, Robert Mach, will be in the foyer at Dundee’s Apex City Hotel & Spa carefully gluing hundreds and hundreds of beautifully flattened Teacake tinfoil wrappers to an Oor Wullie Bucket Trail sculpture.

The sculpture, sponsored by Tunnock’s, is set to be one of 50 sculptures on Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail, Tayside’s largest ever mass participation public art event taking place over ten weeks this summer.

Robert can’t eat all the delicious Tea Cakes on his own, so anyone passing the Apex foyer over the next week are in for a treat…the round, chocolate, marshmallow kind. A free Tunnock’s Tea Cake is all yours, as long as you carefully flatten your wrapper and add it to Robert’s pile of tinfoil all making its way onto the sculpture.

Robert commented:

“As you can imagine, I am eating a LOT of Tunnock’s Tea Cakes to collect the wonderful gold-leaf-like wrappers, so it would be fantastic if members of the public were able to visit the Apex this week and donate their wrappers after enjoying a Teacake.

“I am delighted to be working on this sculpture for Tunnock’s and being part of such a fantastic public art event. I’m sure Teacake Wullie will be a popular stop on the Bucket Trail through the summer.”

Fergus Loudon, Sales Director at Tunnock’s added:

“All of us at Tunnock’s are very pleased to support The ARCHIE Foundation’s Tayside Appeal. Oor Wullie is a national treasure and who better to bring this wonderful appeal to fruition.”

This one-of-a-kind project for Tayside, organised by The ARCHIE Foundation, along with partners Wild In Art and DC Thomson, aims to raise crucial funds for The ARCHIE Foundation’s Tayside appeal to raise two million pounds to help create a brand new twin operating surgical suite for the Tayside Children’s Hospital at Ninewells.

To find out more about Oor Wullie’s Bucket Trail, visit www.oorwulliebuckettrail.com

For further information about the work of The ARCHIE Foundation, visit www.archiefoundationhome.org.uk