Elmer’s Big Heart Of Kent Parade Auction Raises £312,750 For Heart Of Kent Hospice

21st September 2021
Angela Pearmine

Following the colourful Elmer’s Big Heart of Kent Parade this summer, a spectacular auction on 9 September saw 51 of the stunning Elmer sculptures go under the hammer to find their forever homes; at the end of the auction a surprise blank Elmer was unveiled and also auctioned off.

A staggering £312,750 was raised for the Hospice when the large Elmer’s were auctioned by Clive Emson Land and Property Auctioneers at the Mercure Great Danes Hotel last Thursday evening. The eager and enthusiastic crowd, including some telephone and proxy bidders, also drew interest from overseas with two Elmer’s finding their forever homes in Spain and America.

The phenomenal amount raised will help the Hospice to run vital services which cost £5 million per annum.  The Hospice relies on donations, fundraisers and legacies to run its services with only small grants coming from the NHS.

Ralph Steadman’s Elly-do, Ely-don’t, Elly dance raised the most, selling for an amazing £15,500.   Ralph Steadman, who lives near Maidstone, is a prolific artist who in his 60-year career has produced thousands of ground-breaking and influential artworks.

The other Elmer which proved particularly popular with bidders was Strawberry Deuce by artist Megan Evans which sold for an incredible £13,500.

One special moment came when ‘Ele-vate, Encourage, Embrace’ by artist Karen Hiscock-King sold for £13,500 after members of the audience stood up to pledge either £500 or £1000, to enable the Elmer to be installed at the Hospice so that patients, their families, volunteers and Hospice colleagues can enjoy it and remember this very special event.

Rachel Street, Interim Chief Executive Heart of Kent Hospice said: ‘This amazing event was a collaboration between our Hospice, Andersen Press, Wild in Art and Official Presenting Partner Westerhill Homes. We couldn’t have carried out this event without the support of our Parade Partners and Sponsors, our volunteer Trail makers, along with so many other local businesses who gave their time, services and support. The weekend before the auction all the colourful 82 Elmer sculptures were together in one place for the Farewell Weekend, which over 4,000 people attended.

“During the nine-week free art trail 10,370 people downloaded the Parade app and a staggering 383,547 Elmer sculptures were collected, and we know that many more thousands of people enjoyed the Parade on the printed map or enjoyed just stumbling upon the Elmers while in the town centre or walking along the river path and in the parks of Maidstone. This summer the Hospice team have had so many wonderful conversations with new visitors to Maidstone, residents out exploring new and familiar areas and families that the Hospice have supported across the years; as well as being able to tell many more people about the work of our Hospice.”

Director of Income Generation at the Hospice Ann-Marie Kelly said: “Fundraising has been a real challenge for Heart of Kent Hospice during the pandemic, as many of our annual fundraising events and activities have and continue to be unable to take place.  The money raised at the auction will help Heart of Kent Hospice continue to provide specialist advice, support and outstanding care. This staggering amount will pay for our team of Doctors, Nurses and Healthcare Assistants to provide personalised around-the-clock care for eight weeks in our Inpatient Unit. This special home from home environment removes the responsibility of providing care from loved ones, so they can focus on making lasting precious moments together.”

The Auction took place between 6:00pm – 10.30pm and was conducted by Official Auction Partner Clive Emson Land and Property Auctioneers.

Further information on the website  www.elmermaidstone.co.uk

To see photographs taken at the spectacular auction event visit the Parade’s Facebook page

About the Hospice: 2021 marks our 30th anniversary. Three decades of providing free, compassionate, end-of-life care to people living with a terminal illness and their loved ones in Maidstone, Aylesford, Tonbridge and Malling and the surrounding towns and villages.

The Hospice has built an excellent reputation within the local community for the quality of our care, which has been further endorsed by the Care Quality Commission who awarded us with an overall rating of ‘Outstanding’ following an inspection in February 2017.

Our vision is for everyone living with a terminal illness in our community to achieve the best quality of life.   We are committed to achieving this by enabling them to live in comfort, with independence and dignity to the end of their lives, and to support those closest to them.

Last year the Hospice cared for over 1,700 patients and their families in their own homes or at our Aylesford-based Hospice. Our services cost £5 million a year to run, with over £4 million raised through the generosity of our local community.

For regular news and updates relating to the Hospice, please follow us on social media:

Take the next road to business success

Join today from as little as £250

Are you ready to start enjoying the benefits of membership of Kent Invicta Chamber of Commerce?

Join Now
Site by