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Butterflies Spread their Wings at Trentham


Butterflies are set to emerge as the newest art installation at Staffordshire’s award-winning Trentham Gardens – creating a stunning visitor attraction, as well as raising funds for a local hospice.

From the end of May, ‘Taking Flight’, an inspiring temporary installation made up of 5,000 ceramic butterflies, will take centre stage at Trentham Gardens, on the edge of Stoke-on-Trent, with each limited-edition butterfly hand crafted in the heart of the world-famous ‘Potteries’.

Every vibrant blue butterfly will be unique. Together, they will combine to form an inspiring butterfly themed art installation, reflecting Stoke’s rich ceramic and metal industrial heritage.

Trentham Gardens

On display until early November, the new ‘Taking Flight’ installation will not only raise money for charity, but also add to Trentham’s growing reputation as an open-air art gallery, following on from the ever-popular Fairy Trail and a series of bronze wildlife sculptures dotted around the gardens and woodlands.

Read Mark Bibby Jackson’s experience at Trentham Gardens in Fairies, Poppies and a World of Wedgwood.

The intricately made butterflies are available now to buy for £30 each, with all funds raised benefitting The Donna Louise Hospice for Children & Young People.
In addition, each purchase also includes one free day admission to Trentham Gardens to view “Taking Flight” from 25 May to 3 November 2019.

Crafted by two major names in Stoke-on-Trent’s ceramics industry, Wade Ceramics and Johnson Tiles – which made the poppies for the internationally acclaimed Tower of London art installation, Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red commemorating the Centenary of World War One – the campaign was inspired by Charlotte Thom.

Butterfly ceramic. c. Helen Cotton Photography
Butterfly ceramic c. Helen Cotton Photography

The butterfly design is an echo of a painting by Charlotte, who spent time at The Donna Louise and was a keen artist, completing an A-level in the subject before her death last year, aged 20.

The Donna Louise provides a lifeline to families across Staffordshire and South Cheshire who are facing every parent’s worst nightmare; the heart-breaking knowledge that they will almost certainly outlive their child. They provide specialist care and support services for children and young people with life-limiting conditions, due to illness or injury, from birth until no longer needed.

For more details about The Butterflies, visit For more information about visiting Trentham, see

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Mark Bibby Jackson

Mark Bibby Jackson

Before setting up Travel Begins at 40, Mark was the publisher of AsiaLIFE Cambodia and a freelance travel writer. When he is not packing and unpacking his travelling bag, Mark writes novels, including To Cook A Spider and Peppered Justice. He loves walking, eating, tasting beer, isolation and arthouse movies, as well as talking to strangers on planes, buses and trains whenever possible. Most at home when not at home.

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