Giant tortoises to takeover Jersey next summer

Publish date: 15 Jun 2022

Durrell is delighted to reveal that the exciting new sculpture for next year’s art trail is going to be a giant tortoise.

These charismatic creatures will be taking over the island during the summer of 2023 as ambassadors for all the work that Durrell undertakes with reptiles across the globe.

The specially commissioned sculpture was unveiled at Government House this evening at the official launch event for Durrell’s next sculpture trail – Tortoise Takeover. Potential sponsors were invited to hear more about the trail and how they could get involved.

Dr Lesley Dickie, CEO of Durrell, said: “This time, the trail will feature incredible giant tortoises. From the highly endangered ploughshare tortoise in Madagascar to the amazing Aldabra giant tortoises that we deploy on Round Island off the north coast of Mauritius to act as ‘ecological engineers’, Durrell has a long history of working with tortoises. Not only are these ancient creatures important actors in their ecosystems, but they also hold key cultural values across multiple countries.”

Sadly, chelonians, which includes tortoises, turtles and terrapins, are now the most threatened vertebrate group and need help more than ever. Furthermore, the amphibian and reptile house at Jersey Zoo is home to some of the most endangered species that Durrell works with, but it is in urgent need of improved and more sustainable facilities.

Dr Dickie continued: “Tortoise Takeover will mark the launch of our campaign to raise funds to build a new Tropical House, which will allow our team to continue the exemplary care they provide for these precious species into the future.”

The team that brought you Go Wild Gorillas in 2019 will once again be partnering with Wild in Art to inspire Islanders and visitors to explore Jersey and connect with nature via this vibrant sculpture trail. Next year, dozens of artist-imagined, giant tortoises will adorn Jersey’s wild places, coastal lookouts, and urban hangouts.

Charlie Langhorne, Managing Director and Co-founder of Wild in Art, commented: “We are very excited to continue our partnership with Durrell. Tortoise Takeover is a fantastic opportunity for businesses, the creative sector and communities to come together and create something very special for Jersey. With your support, we can create an event that will have significant impact during the summer of 2023.”

The team at Durrell were also pleased to announce the Presenting Partners for Tortoise Takeover are Blue Islands and Ports of Jersey.

Matt Thomas, CEO of Ports of Jersey, said: “We exist to serve our community and take our responsibility to the environment and sustainability seriously. We believe that the best way we can help build the future that the island deserves is by taking a leading role in developing a sustainable future for our island and tackling the challenges this brings head on. Our partnership with Durrell is one part of that. Their continued passion and efforts to secure and improve biodiversity are inspirational and we are honoured to be working with them.”

Rob Veron, CEO of Blue Islands, said: “Durrell is synonymous with Jersey, our home, and the community for which Blue Islands provides essential connectivity; that’s why we’re proud to sponsor the next Durrell sculpture trail, which engages and captures the imagination of every islander and provides a wonderful, exciting story for those visiting our beautiful island.

Our existing partnership with Durrell through its Rewild Carbon programme is our vital first step in our plan for change and has been so well received by our customers and our Blue Islands team. This nature-based programme enables us to offset our emissions for carbon neutral flying as we ensure our air services are genuinely sustainable. Go Wild Gorillas in 2019 was hugely successful in generating funds to support Jersey Zoo and we look forward to seeing the sculptures appearing throughout the island.”

In addition, the team at Durrell shared that Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) is the Education Partner for the trail, which will enable Jersey’s school children to get involved.

Businesses of all sizes can get involved in the trail by sponsoring a tortoise sculpture, providing a location or becoming a partner.

Latest news

08 Jul 2024

Jersey War Tunnels celebrates fourth consecutive win in Trip Advisor’s Travelers’ Choice Awards

The unique attraction has been awarded the Tripadvisor Travelers’ Choice 2024 award, maintaining its esteemed place among the top 10% of attractions worldwide.
08 Jul 2024

Damien Molony set to star as Jim Bergerac in re-imagined series of Bergerac

Casting is now confirmed for the re-imagined series of Bergerac.
Jersey Marinas
05 Jul 2024

Jersey Marinas are designated Superyacht Ready

Jersey Marinas have been designated Superyacht Ready by the Yacht Harbour Association (TYHA). This means the facilities provided have been judged able to provide the services required by the world’s superyachts.
Costumed walking tours
05 Jul 2024

St Helier in the Georgian Era – Costumed Walking Tours

This summer the Trust has programmed a series of costumed walking tours around St Helier themed around Georgian history in order to bring the setting of 16 New Street to life.
27 Jun 2024

Join Durrell’s “Founder’s Trek”

A once-in-a-lifetime adventure in India to support endangered wildlife conservation.
26 Jun 2024

Building work underway for new gorilla house

Work is underway for a new state-of-the-art gorilla house at Jersey Zoo.
25 Jun 2024

Exhibition & Activity at the Seaside Cafe

Since the States approved the acquisition of the land and property of the former Seaside Café at Grève De Lecq and agreed to gift the site to the National Trust for Jersey, the car park has been opened and the site has been cleaned, tidied, and painted in time for the summer season.
17 Jun 2024

Head Sommelier at The Atlantic Hotel and Ocean Restaurant, Named in 2024 Top 100 UK Sommeliers

The Atlantic Hotel and Ocean Restaurant is thrilled to announce that Alexandru Dan, its highly regarded Head Sommelier, has been ranked #40 in the 2024 Top 100 UK Sommeliers by The Sommelier Edit.
13 Jun 2024

Army of Volunteers at the Seaside Café in Grève de Lecq

The Jersey Financial Services Commission is fielding volunteers from all areas of the organisation to assist the small team at the National Trust for Jersey to paint, clean and tidy the former Seaside Café and surrounding areas at Grève de Lecq.
12 Jun 2024

The Atlantic’s Jack Edgar Named Semi-Finalist in Prestigious National Chef Competition

Jack Edgar, Senior Chef de Partie at The Atlantic Hotel and Ocean Restaurant, Jersey, has been named a semi-finalist in the prestigious Craft Guild of Chefs Young National Chef of the Year competition.
04 Jun 2024

New Audio-Visual Installation ‘Layers of Time’ at 16 New Street.

Kindly supported by The Jersey Community Foundation with funds from the Channel Islands Lottery.