About this time last night we were looking ahead to the Auction of Torbay and Exeter`s gorillas. 24 hours later, and exactly £100,000 has been raised with most selling for than £3,000 each.
The project had been organised to celebrate the 90 birthday of Paignton Zoo. Richard lawrence watched the auction and met some of the successful buyers
A hundred thousand pounds has been raised from the auction of the thirty decorated Gorillas that were placed around Torbay and Exeter this summer.
The highest bid for a single gorilla was £5,300.
Most were sold to people living in the West Country. Some said they`ll keep them in their gardens while others want to put them in public locations.
The money is going to gorilla conservation and the Children's Hospice South West.
Just a few months ago gorillas were taking over Torbay and Exeter. The colourful statues designed by artists became a major tourist attraction, with thousands of people visiting to take their photographs with them.
Tonight they're being auctioned off for charity at Paignton's Palace Theatre. Our reporter Richard Lawrence went to see them before the auction began.
The striking painted gorillas that have spent the summer in prominent positions around Exeter and Torbay have been reunited at Paignton Zoo.
The 30 statues are on public display together for the next four days only .
They've been brought out a day earlier than expected in case of more visitors due to the teachers strike .
The Gorillas will be sold off at an auction on November 6th to raise money for the conservation of the species in the wild.
Paignton Zoo's Great Gorilla art project comes to an end today. Gorilla sculptures will be collected across the English Riviera and taken back to the zoo. They'll be put on display, before being auctioned for charity next month.
The models arrived as part of the Great Gorillas Project. They will now be sponsored by local businesses and painted by artists from the area and put up across Torbay and Exeter. It is hoped the statues will raise awareness of the zoo and raise money for gorilla conservation.