Thursday, 24 January 2019

Decorated hippos stay close to home

A HENLEY businessman has purchased the lion’s share of a community art project, or perhaps that should be the hippo’s share.

Darren West, who owns Henley Self-Storage on the Newtown Road industrial estate, bought 50 papier-mâché models of the creatures which were decorated by the town’s schools, clubs and community groups earlier this year.

The 1ft long models were among 200 that were displayed at various locations around Henley this summer to celebrate the bicentenary of Leander Club.

About 20 were kept by their contributors while the rest were auctioned, raising at least £8,000 for clean water and wildlife conservation research on the Zambezi river in Zambia.

Mr West intends to display his hippos throughout his premises, which are host to a number of other small businesses including The Café, Hannah Victoria Nails and AKG Men’s Grooming.

The models have travelled a relatively short distance compared with others from the exhibition, which have ended up in supporters’ homes as far afield as America, New Zealand and Australia.

I’m sure the artists who decorated them are delighted that they can still pop in and admire their handiwork.

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