Colchester Zoo’s charity Action for the Wild raises well over £100,000 at Stand Tall auction

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Conservation projects around the world will receive a massive boost after Colchester Zoo raised £115,400 through the auction of its Stand Tall giraffes.

The 29 sculptures, which stand at 2.5m tall, were created to mark the 50th anniversary of the award winning wildlife attraction. Each painted in its own distinctive style; they were on display around Colchester and surrounding towns for 12 weeks before returning to the zoo for a farewell tour. 15 of the giraffes also paid a visit to the banks of the River Thames at More London, allowing even more people to see them in all their glory.

Yesterday, the end of the Stand Tall for Giraffes project was marked with an auction at firstsite in aid of the zoo’s charity Action For The Wild. Led by Colchester auction house Reeman Dansie and sponsored by Essex Audi, all of the Stand Tall giraffes were sold amidst lively bidding. Also under the hammer were two special 1.3m tall giraffe sculptures, one signed by Sir David Attenborough and one by some of the cast of Dr Who.

Colchester Zoo Director Anthony Tropeano said, “Three giraffes Sarasvati, Big Catrina and Jungle Jenny raised a total of just off £20,000 on their own. We’re delighted by the success of the auction,” he said. “We knew the giraffes had struck a chord with the public but we couldn’t have foreseen just how much money they would raise. We’d like to thank each and every bidder for supporting us on the night.”

Since Action For The Wild achieved charitable status in 2004, over £700,000 has been donated to a broad spectrum of conservation projects worldwide. A huge range of species benefits from the charity including vultures, orangutans, pygmy hippos, komodo dragons and elephants. Action for the Wild also has its own nature reserve in South Africa.

Stand Tall for Giraffes was run in partnership with art event specialist Wild in Art who stand to receive 25 per cent of the auction proceeds.

For more information about the charity, visit or visit to find out more about the Stand Tall for Giraffes project.


Notes to Editors

  • Constantly evolving, Colchester Zoo is an award winning wildlife attraction which stretches over 60 acres in the heart of the Essex countryside. It has nearly 300 species in modern, naturalistic enclosures; many are which are part of vital international breeding programmes. In 2013, Colchester Zoo celebrates its 50th anniversary with “Stand Tall for Giraffes” a mass appeal, large-scale public art event which culminates in a high profile auction for its charity Action For The Wild. The funds raised will help to assist conservation projects all over the world including the charity’s UmPhafa Reserve in South Africa.
  • Wild in Art is the UK’s leading arts and education company, bringing the creativity and enjoyment of public art to thousands of people through its high profile and popular events. Working with host partners, artists, communities and schools together with public and private sector organisations, Wild in Art produces mass participation events that animate cities and towns around the UK and beyond.Through inspiring partnerships, Wild in Art events bring immense pride to communities while offering extraordinary social and economic benefits as thousands of residents and tourists alike discover the wonderful world of creativity in a truly memorable shared experience. Conservation and citizenship are at the heart of Wild in Art’s education work which includes the provision of unique art education resources which engage young people to unleash their creative talent, and enhance learning across the curriculum. Find out more at

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