Members of the Surrey Hills Partnership were treated to a special unveiling of the Surrey Hills Cow at Coverwood Farm the official ‘Cow Parade HQ’ this week. The striking chrome cow, painted by metal work specialists Spray Chrome UK which reflects the landscape of the Surrey Hills was officially unveiled by Cow Parade Leader Tim Metson and the Mayor of Waverley, Councillor Mike Band.
Tim comments; “Cow Parade is the world’s largest public art event and it provides a unique opportunity to raise awareness of the Surrey Hills and in particular farming. My family have been farming at Coverwood Farm in Ewhurst since the 1950s, and we have seen many changes. The high land and labour prices, together with the depression in agricultural incomes, create a massive pressure to give up farming or diversify which does not benefit the Surrey Hills. Cow Parade coming to the Surrey Hills allows us to shine a light on what an important role farmers play as custodians of the landscape”.
The idea of the Cow Parade is that individuals, companies and schools will sponsor a life-size fibreglass cow and either decorate it themselves, or bring in an artist to do it. The cows will then be displayed around Surrey before being herded to the inaugural Surrey Hills Food, Drink and Music Festival next summer where they will be auctioned off for charity. Those judged to be extra special will be auctioned at a glittering ceremony held at a unique London location later in the year.
Mayor of Waverley, Councillor Mike Band comments: “The Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) covers a quarter of the County of Surrey, a high proportion of which falls within Waverley Borough. I have lived in the Surrey Hills for over 40 years and I am very keen to protect this special area for future generations to enjoy. I see Cow Parade Surrey Hills as a great opportunity to raise awareness of this special landscape and raise funds for one of my chosen mayoral charities, the Surrey Hills Trust Fund”.
Cow Parade was born in Switzerland in 1998 and has been staged in more than 80 cities and towns worldwide. Over the years 3,000 cows have been decorated by more than 5,000 artists. Cow Parade New York had 450 cows and was seen worldwide by 45 million people. The highest-grossing cow was created by designer John Rocha for Cow Parade Dublin in 2003 – studded with thousands of pieces of Waterford Crystal it was auctioned for $146,000.
For more information on how to take part call the Cow Parade Surrey Hills team on 01483 661150 or visit the website at www.cowparadesurreyhills.com