Council urged to back Cow Parade tourism initiative

CRAIGAVON council has been urged round up cows for the borough’s streets next year.

Not real cows - but life size fibre-glass reinforced cows.

In a presentation to the council’s Development Committee Asitis Consulting outlined the opportunities that

existed for Craigavon through the Cow Parade Northern Ireland 2012 initiative.

Cow Parade brought life size fibre-glass reinforced cows to the streets of a host region. It was the world’s largest and most successful public art exhibition. A charity auction at the end of the event helped to raise money for chosen charity partners and all contributing artists were paid a fee.

Asitis Consulting had secured the license to bring Cow Parade to Northern Ireland in 2012.

Councils were being invited to participate on a smaller scale sponsorship level and Cow Parade were hoping to achieve sponsorship in the region of 270 cows.

Questions from councillors were answered as follows:

The cows would be transportable and the logistics would be part of the sponsorship fee.

The cows could become damaged and vandalised but there was an insurance policy in place and a “cow hospital” in Manchester where they could be repaired.

After 12 weeks of the cows being on display, council could purchase one cow. The other three cows would be auctioned off.

One cow would cost £3.5k. £15k was the price of four cows plus a mini moo.

If all 26 Councils became involved it would be expected to be a guaranteed success with an increase in tourism and retail spend.

After the presentation the committee was told that 2012 would be an important year in Northern Ireland with the centenary of the Titanic and major events such as the Olympic Torch Run also planned for the Borough.

However, as part of the efficiency savings, funding had been reduced in the festival and events budget which would impact funding events.

Councillor Kenneth Twyble suggested costings should be looked into in further detail and a report brought back to Committee.

Alderman Mrs Meta Crozier said that whilst Cow Parade seemed a good idea which would attract tourists, she was mindful of the costs in the current economic climate.

It was agreed that a further report on Cow Parade be brought to the next committee meeting.