Bit of background here: Bee in the City is a public art event in Manchester, that's on until 23rd September. All across the city, there are fabulous sculptures of bees (the one in the picture above is 'Polly-do-you-remember' at Clayton Hall, for instance). The 101 'big' bees have each been designed by different artist, and their designs incorporate all sorts of aspects of Manchester's character, celebrities and history. There are also colonies of 'little' bees in various locations around the city, each designed by schools, community groups and youth organizations. Like most people in Manchester seem to, I love the bees.
Never one to do things by halves, I've decided that I want to see all 101 big bees. And I want to do it in a single day. Without using a car. And my Charlestown colleagues Basil and Veronica have agreed to do the challenge with me!
Stretching from Heaton Park to Manchester Airport, the Bee in the City trail takes in so much of Manchester (and loads of iconic locations). I reckon I know our city pretty well, so I think I can handle the challenge! I guess there's only one way to find out...
So, on Saturday 22nd September, from 8am-8pm, Team Charlestown will be racing round the city to spot all 101 bees! And we're going to be raising money for the Lord Mayor's Charity while we're at it. The Lord Mayor's Charity (also known as the We Love Manchester Charity) supports community groups and young people across the city, using the money it raises to support communities and breakdown barriers in the city.
Team Charlestown would love your support! You can sponsor us via our JustGiving page, and follow along with our Bee Marathon on Twitter on the #MancCharityBuzz hashtag. I'll be posting pictures of our journey through the city all day on the 22nd.
Hopefully, I'll be able to persuade some other councillors and council officers to take up the challenge, so I'll update this post when I know a bit more. (And if it does turn into a race, I'm totally confident Team Charlestown can win!)
And if you're interested in doing a sponsored bee-related activity yourself, there's information about fundraising and ideas for activities here.