The 25 Lincoln Barons were temporarily given an unseasonably wintry look by a knitting group determined to keep the sculptures in the city centre permanently.
The Lincoln Yarn Bombers spent yesterday evening wrapping the Barons in knitted scarves, to “keep them warm at night.”
The yarn bombing lasted for about an hour between 10.30 and 11.30pm, with eight members of the self-titled ‘Yarn Army’ dressing up the Barons.
However, most of the scarves have since been removed this morning.
Nuala Barczak, ambassador of The Lincoln Yarn Bombers, said: “We thought it was fun and a pretty cool idea to bring the public’s attention to the Barons with the auction coming up.
“We started this project because as a stitch and b***h group we felt the Barons needed something to keep them warm at night and hopefully cold people would make good use of them should they be chilly.
“We’re really sad that they’ll be going as people have put a lot of effort into them but it’s good that they’re going to raise money for charity.”
— Visit Lincoln (@visitlincoln) July 24, 2015
The Yarn Bombers have not ruled out repeating the exercise again, and also plan future yarn bombs with poppies for Remembrance Sunday and to tidy up the railings by Brayford Wharf.
This latest stunt follows an online campaign launched to save the Barons from being auctioned off for charity.
The Lincoln Barons to Stay Facebook page has received nearly 3,500 likes from local residents since it was set up two days ago.
Despite this, the Barons will be auctioned off on October 1, to raise money for national poverty charity the Trussell Trust.
Emma Tatlow, Visit Lincoln Partnership Manager, said: “We have been overwhelmed by the support for the Barons and the interest the trail has caused.
“To hear that the Lincoln Yarn Bombers knitted 25 scarves and went around the city during the night to adorn every Baron with their own scarf is evidence of just how much love there is for the Barons.
“People have until the middle of September to enjoy the trail, so I hope that this enthusiasm and positive support continues and that many more people enjoy the trail in the months to come.”
Jenny Marshall, Project Manager for the Barons for the Trussell Trust, said: “It’s been lovely to see all the scarves out on the Barons and to see the people of Lincoln fully embrace the project.
“The Barons were a project created by the Trussell Trust for Lincoln and Salisbury. They were always designed to be a temporary art installation to benefit the local economies of both cities, increase the footfall and raise awareness of the Trussell Trust.
“In Lincolnshire, 5778 people used Trussell Trust food banks in Lincolnshire in the 12 months up to April 2015. Of these 2,000 were children.
“So hopefully people understand that the Barons have been a win-win situation. They have seen a huge increase in the number of visitors to the city and the money raised will help people in need in Lincoln and across the whole country.”