Meet Go Go Gorilla Geoffrey in Norwich this summer

The Gorilla Geoffrey created by Wymondham artist Sandy Jones

The Gorilla Geoffrey created by Wymondham artist Sandy Jones - Credit: Liz Richards, Break

When the Go Go Gorillas sculptures are paraded around the streets of Norwich this summer, one of the more colourful creatures on display - a gorilla named Geoffrey - has been created by a Wymondham artist.

Sandy Jones, 48, who lives in Queen Street, Wymondham, was commissioned by the charity the Geoffrey Watling Trust to paint the 5ft tall fibreglass sculpture to represent the trust.

To that end, she included images representing the life of Mr Watling, who was a successful entrepreneur. The images include the speed boat he used to race in, his ice cream factory business and the Samson and Hercules ballroom in Norwich.

She has also painted the Gorilla yellow to represent the Jarretts Removals business he bought, with a tinge of green around the chin to represent the colours of Norwich City Football Club. Mr Watling was chairman of the Canaries during the 1950s and 60s.

Mum-of-two Mrs Jones took three months to complete the painting, having started in February after the Geoffrey Watling Trust, which is sponsoring the gorilla, was put in touch with her through the charity Break, which is running the Go Go Gorillas project.

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She added: 'I find it quite exciting to do things that are quite different so I am quite open to new ideas.

'It has been quite interesting to work on such a large 3D piece of artwork and to develop my own art skills by working on such a large prominent creature that is going to be outdoors.'

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The Go Go Gorillas is being organised in partnership with Wild in Art and the wildlife charity The Born Free Foundation and will involve over 100 gorillas being paraded around the city, each of which has been sponsored by local businesses.

The gorilla trail will last for 10 weeks with the aim being to stimulate the local economy and engender civic pride and at the end of the parade they will be auctioned off to raise money for charity.

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