Threat to bumble bees features in Royal Parks Foundation fundraiser launch

The plight of Britain’s bees took centre stage at the launch of the Royal Parks Foundation’s public art project, Deckchair Dreams.

Countryfile presenter, Julia Bradbury, has used the decline of the bumble bee as inspiration for her design for one of this year’s limited edition deckchairs. Another bee-themed canvas has come from sponsors, Bloomberg, and their artist, Dan Seffens.

Deckchair Dreams 2013 which is sponsored by Bloomberg, features 20 new designs all based on the theme of ‘Nature’s Grand Designs’.

Since 2006, more than £250,000 has been raised through the sale of the designer deckchairs. Projects benefitting include new swings for the Diana Playground in Kensington Gardens, a community allotment and hedgehog conservation in Regent’s Park, as well as the restoration of Richmond Park’s Isabella Plantation.

Alongside Julia Bradbury, Ronnie Wood, Harry Enfield, Miranda Richardson, Take That’s Howard Donald and Chris Beardshaw are among the celebrities who have contributed to the project, which aims to bring awareness of art, design and nature to visitors to London’s Royal Parks this summer.

Established artists, Michael Craig Martin, Susan Stockwell, Maggi Hambling and Luke Jerram are also taking part. The 2013 collection includes designs by two local schools, an arts group and Age UK residents.

The project will see 550 deckchairs designed by celebrities from the worlds of visual art, music, performing arts and design set out in four of London’s central Royal Parks from 4 July until the end of October.

It is the first time the Royal Parks Foundation has unveiled a new collection of deckchairs since 2010.


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