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Babbacombe Model Village is getting involved in Paignton Zoo’s Great Gorillas Project in a big way – by faithfully recreating the trail of life-size painted gorillas in miniature.

Thirty 5 inch-tall china gorillas have been placed around the Model Village for the summer. Some artists have painted their own miniatures, while others have been completed by Model Village staff.

In addition, Babbacombe Model Village has sponsored a full-size silverback gorilla that is more than ten times the size of the miniatures. Back of Beyond was painted by Peter Poole, from Hove, in East Sussex, and can be found not far from the entrance to the attraction.

During October half term 20 juvenile gorillas decorated by schools will be displayed at the Model Village, which is marking its 50th anniversary this year. Visitors will be able to vote for their favourite – the reward for the winning school will be free visits to Paignton Zoo and to the Model Village itself.

The Great Gorillas Project is celebrating the 90th birthday of the region’s largest and best-known zoo, Paignton Zoo Environmental Park. It is also raising funds for gorilla conservation and for Children’s Hospice South West.

Life-size model gorillas have been sponsored by businesses and community groups, painted in original designs by specially-commissioned artists and displayed in public, creating a unique art trail around Exeter and the English Riviera. For further information go to: www.greatgorillas.org.uk.

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