Providing a beautifully fitting end to an incredible Bee based summer for Sundae Communications was the Bee in the City auction. The extra special night saw 77 (and a secret 78th) of the Bee in the City sculptures which featured on this summer’s art trail auctioned off to raise an unbelievable £1,128,250 for The Lord Mayor of Manchester’s We Love MCR Charity.
Celebrity auctioneer and TV personality Charles Hanson (Bargain Hunt, Flog It!) and Briony Harford hosted the charity auction, which took place at the HSBC UK National Cycling Centre. The Bees went under the hammer in front of guests digging deep to bid, as well as online and telephone bidders.
The most popular Bee on the night was Bee United painted by Joseph Venning, sponsored by Manchester United Football Club and adorned with Manchester United footballing legends, which raised £31,000 at auction plus an extra £5,000 donated by the club, totalling £36,000 raised. Other highlights included A Worker Bee’s Work is Never Done by Laura-Kate Chapman, which raised £25,000, and Dazzle Bee by Liz Faram which also raised £25,200. A surprise 78th lot was added to the end of the auction on the night; a blank Bee to be painted by the winners’ choice of a Bee in the City artist, which raised £22,000.
This rousing finale to the Bee in the City initiative was the most rewarding part of the campaign for us, as we saw the fruits of our labour, alongside the Wild in Art team, come to life in the form of a huge amount of cash raised for an amazing cause so close to our hearts.
As the results came rolling in, we got to work and proceeded to spread the word about the money raised to key media, live, direct, as it happened. Prior to the event we lined up Granada Reports to head along and cover the auction alongside the MEN who were live blogging about each and every lot straight to their website.
In addition we gained key regional and national coverage in outlets such as BBC North West Tonight, i Newspaper, MSN.com, BT.com, Mail Online, ITV.com, MEN, Design Week, Hits Radio, Manchester Confidential and I Love Manchester taking the overall reach of the campaign to over 1.2 billion.
We are so, so proud to have been a part of Bee in the City and to have delivered one of our finest campaigns to date; it has been an absolute rollercoaster and one that we would ride every single year if we could! We shall miss it dearly and it will forever Bee the cherry on top of our Sundae.
(Images: Bee in the City / David Oates)