Art gallery phone box for Churchdown - as Cecil the squirrel comes to stay
SECRET squirrel has landed in Churchdown.
The furry creature is a temporary addition to the parish council, on loan from Hidden Britain, to help promote tourism in the area.
Hidden Britain is an online guide helping people discover lesser known places of interest around the country.
Parish councillors visited a tourism workshop to help develop Churchdown as a visitor destination.
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To mark the partnership, a squirrel named Cecil, has been photographed at community projects and will appear on Hidden Britain's YouTube and Facebook sites to promote the council's work – with the latest council scheme being the adoption of a BT red phone box for a makeshift art gallery.
Although the squirrel idea may seem 'nuts', parish council leader Pearl Stokes says Cecil is already popular.
"Everyone who has met Cecil has taken it in good spirits. He had his photo taken with the mayor of Cinderford, and a group of German students on an exchange trip to Tewkesbury. I think they were a bit confused when I tried to explain why he was here. He has had some clothes made for him by one of the council clerks to keep him warm through the winter. Cecil has so far been to civic ceremonies and the AGM of the market towns forum – but we'll be keeping him indoors for the fireworks extravaganza on Friday."
Speaking about a recent phone box project, where local schools can display their artwork, she said: "Adopting the phone box is a good initiative and will help to preserve the community's history and identity."
Many of the iconic red boxes dotted around the country have been taken up by communities under the BT Adopt a Kiosk scheme where communities can buy a phone box for just £1.