The Grand Appeal marks 21 years

Bristol Children’s Hospital Charity supported by Aardman has raised £40 million.

The Grand Appeal, the Bristol Children’s Hospital Charity which is supported by Aardman Animations, is celebrating a brace this year – not only is it the 21st anniversary, but it has also raised £40 million.

The Grand Appeal was founded in 1995 to raise funds to build a brand new children’s hospital in Bristol – the first in the UK designed specifically around children.

Nick Park, Peter Lord and David Sproxton from Aardman donated the use of the Wallace and Gromit characters to spearhead the fundraising, and by 2001 the charity had raised £12 million and the hospital opened its doors.

Since then, The Grand Appeal has continued its work for the hospital, which now treats more than 100,000 critically ill children and babies a year.

Peter Lord, co-founder of Aardman and chairman of The Grand Appeal, said: “The Grand Appeal’s 21st anniversary and the £40million it has raised in that time is a true cause for celebration.

“I remember the first meeting when the charity approached us and we all decided that Wallace and Gromit would be the perfect figureheads for a new appeal. It seemed then, and it still seems, the perfect partnership for Bristol, and we’re delighted to have been able to help make a huge difference to sick children’s lives. Since then, it has been a great honour for me to stay so closely involved with the charity’s work – currently as its chairman.

“Everyone at Aardman is proud of our very special relationship with The Grand Appeal, and the part Wallace and Gromit have had to play in all of the amazing things the charity has achieved. Here’s to the next 21 years.”

Nicola Masters, director of The Grand Appeal, added: “When The Grand Appeal was launched in 1995 we had no idea of the overwhelming support we would receive, and continue to receive, from across Bristol, the South West and South Wales, not least from Nick Park, Peter Lord and David Sproxton of Aardman.”

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