12 Aug

Accelerate Runners Visit The Elephants

Accelerate Group Shot To celebrate the launch of the Herd of Sheffield, 70 Accelerate runners come together last month for a 11k fun run in aid of The Children’s Hospital Charity. For the duration of the summer, Sheffield is housing 58 elephant sculptures for the biggest public art event the city has seen and armed with trail maps, the Accelerate team attempted to visit as many of these as possible.

The sculptures have been uniquely decorated by artists and placed in Sheffield’s parks and open spaces. Each artist has used their own creative mark on a 1.6m tall fiberglass elephant sculpture to individualise their pieces which will remain on display until 5 October.

The elephants caught the attention of the team at Accelerate, the specialist running store, and they devised a run to incorporate as many of the sculptures as possible. Accelerate co-owner Stuart Hale explains: “We bobbed into town, bought a trail map and decided that there was definitely an orienteering challenge to be done. We pencilled out a rough route, publicised our plans on social media and the response was really great. We’re planning to repeat the whole route nearer to the end of the trail. It’s just really good fun!”

Armed with trail maps and using the hashtag #gathertheherd (plus taking a few ‘selfies’ along the way), the team managed to visit 45 of the sculptures, raising £187 for The Children’s Hospital Charity. The money will go directly towards Artfelt, the Children’s Hospital Charity arts programme, which aims to make the clinic more comfortable by transforming the walls of the children’s hospital and bringing creative workshops to the wards.

As a further way to raise funds for Sheffield Children's Hospital, a Virtual Stampede has been organised for the month of September. Prospective entrants are encouraged to sign up to run, cycle or swim your way to 60km during the month to raise funds that will go towards new physiotherapy equipment for Sheffield Children’s Hospital.