Belfast Telegraph

Bonneville’s marmalade masterpiece

Hugh Bonneville has designed a Paddington Bear that will be placed around London.

The Downton Abbey actor is one of 50 famous faces that has designed a 3ft 6in version of the iconic bear for The Paddington Trail. The statues will be placed around the English capital for people to find and Hugh was delighted to be part of the process.

“I’ve done one, in a tribute to marmalade. There’s a tribute to David Beckham called Golden Paws, then London Mayor Boris Johnson has done one,” he told ITV London News. “Nicole Kidman has done the blush bear. Mine is the story of marmalade, starting with the oranges in his feet and then ends up with the marmalade sandwich in his hat for emergencies.”

The trail begins at Heathrow airport and continues across the city to the O2 Arena, with many of the figures being placed near major landmarks and museums. Then in December, they will be auctioned off for children’s charity the NSPCC.

“It’s a great opportunity for Londoners and tourists to look at London through fresh eyes, just like the bear does when he first arrives in the UK,” Hugh added.

The 50-year-old British actor got involved after taking on the role of Mr. Brown in the forthcoming movie, Paddington. The film also stars Academy Award winning actress Nicole, Julie Walters and Jim Broadbent.

“He is an iconic figure from my childhood and for millions of people, so it was very special when this project came along,” he said. “I can’t wait for audiences around the country to see him. People say, ‘That doesn’t look like Paddington, the Paddington I know is about this high and looks like a teddy bear and has wellington boots’, but I think our Paddington goes back to the original drawings from the very first book. Everyone’s got their own Paddington normally in their head but hopefully this will introduce him to a new generation.”

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