22 November 2019
They brightened up the summer in Stockport but now the town’s resident giant frogs have hopped off for pastures new.
Eighteen of the 22 giant sculptures from Stockport’s Giant Leap Frog Art Trail were auctioned off to the highest bidders on Thursday night, making a whopping £31k for charity.
Fans of the frogs packed into the auction at LSH Auto’s new Mercedes-Benz showroom in Stockport where more than 100 business owners, sponsors, artists, supporters and bidders joined Simon Charles Auctioneers.
Running concurrently online and live in the showroom, first under the hammer was Nexphibian, sponsored by Nexperia and painted by Nick Lowndes, circuiting the room before securing a forever home for £1,050.
Buster, depicting Stockport’s iconic 192 bus and fairytale character Sir Lovealot both hopped off with a £1,000 price tag while Stockport College’s Midas, Mrs Merseyway the happy shopper and BASF’s Chemit pipped them at the post for £1,100.
Sponsored by Orbit Developments, Sir Hopalot went for £1,500.
But it was the final trio that attracted the highest bids – Fanatical Freddie selling for £3,000, Marketing Stockport’s Strawberry Fields for £4,800 and Edgeleap for £5,000.
All the money raised will go to Stepping Hill’s Tree House children’s ward.
Deputy matron Claire Gibson said: “I’m thrilled and just keep smiling. We are so very grateful and excited about what this means for the children and young people who use the Treehouse Children’s Unit.
“The proceeds far exceeded any of our expectations and we are awestruck at the possibilities that such a large donation opens up to us.
“Our Treehouse building celebrated its 20th birthday this year and how wonderful it will be to give it a much-needed new lease of life.
“The ground floor of the building serves all of our outpatient facilities and outside garden area, while the first floor is home to our inpatient ward and assessment area.
“We would love to create a spectacular experience right from the front entrance to our building, where children and young people feel comfortable and even excited about coming into and the frog auction will enable this to happen.”
Sponsored by local businesses, the frogs were the brainchild of Totally Stockport, the team from Stockport’s Business Improvement District.
Totally Stockport’s BID manager Paul Taylor said: “When we first conceived the idea of the frog project, we never imagined just how successful it has been; over the summer thousands came to Stockport to follow the trail and discover all the frogs.
“To end the project with such a fantastic auction is truly amazing. A small dedicated team made all this happen and, on behalf of everyone involved, I would like to say a huge thank you to the sponsors, artists, local businesses who have supported us.
“LSH Mercedes-Benz Stockport have been fantastic and hosted a great evening and the team from Simon Charles Auctioneers gave their time for free, I really can’t thank them all enough.
“But I would also like to say a big thank you to the people of Stockport who have loved and respected the frogs; that has given us the confidence and the drive to do it all again, watch this space.”