On your barks, get set… go! The world’s first art trail to feature balloon-shaped dogs is coming to Swindon on 15th July to 3rd September 2023.
The Big Dog Art Trail includes 30 Swindogs (around 2m in height) and 42 smaller ones – known as ‘Swinpups’. Covering a 16 mile radius, this unmissable FREE family event will take visitors on a tour of Swindon’s finest landmarks, re-TAILers, streets, parks and public spaces.
Each Swindog has been adopted and sponsored by businesses and organisations from across the region who have worked alongside some of the best artists from the South West and beyond to create an array of colourful, PAWsome designs!
Notable artists involved in the trail include Scottish brothers David and Robert Mach, David King Reuben, Jane Morgan, Kitty Shepherd whose design - Puppy Love - is inspired by Donny Osmond, alongside Wiltshire-based artist Hannah Dosanjh’s design - Tails of Swindon.
The 42 Swinpups have been created by local schools, youth groups and communities. These cute and playful canines will join the large dog sculptures on the trail.
The Big Dog Art Trail is a community project presented by Julia’s House in partnership with Wild in Art, raising vital funds for the Wiltshire-based Julia’s House Children’s Hospice charity.
With many families still struggling with the cost of living crisis, and the prospect of entertaining schoolchildren for more than five weeks this summer, an art trail that’s fun, creative and engaging for both children and adults is an appealing option for parents on a budget. And, we all know that dogs are everyone’s best friend!
Swindon is a thriving and diverse modern town that is full of hidden gems. Its much-loved Designer Outlet shopping centre is housed in the restored railway works, right next door to historic STEAM Museum. With beautiful green outdoor spaces including Coate Water Country Park, Town Gardens and Lydiard Park, Swindon is an enjoyable town to meander around. Its great transport links from Bath, Bristol, Cheltenham, Oxford, Gloucester, Reading and Salisbury make it very accessible for visitors.
On 16th & 17th September 2023, the complete pack of Swindogs and Swinpups will be brought together at Swindon’s historic STEAM Museum (located next to the Designer Outlet Swindon), providing the perfect opportunity to combine art, history and shopping in one PAWsome day out for all the family. On 19th September, the dogs will be auctioned off at the STEAM Museum to raise vital funds for Julia’s House, before heading off to their FURever homes.
For more information about the trail, sponsors and artists, or to download the map and education packs, visit The Big Dog Art Trail website at https://www.bigdogarttrail.co.uk/ or follow @bigdogarttrail on Instagram, Facebook, TikTok and Twitter.
You can discover the Swindog and Swinpup sculptures in any order you like on The Big Dog Art Trail. Use The Big Dog Art Trail app (when live) or map to help you navigate your route. You may like to start the trail at the Designer Outlet Swindon, where you’ll be able to pick up a trail map and find ample parking nearby. Visitors arriving by train should travel to Swindon where you’ll find your first Swindog right outside the station! All sections of The Big Dog Art Trail are fully accessible.