Maclaren kicked off the celebration by gifting the children of London a 10 ft-tall Asian Elephant named, Tara that was modeled after the real life, Tara from Mark Shand’s best-selling book Travel on My Elephant. Tara arrived at Duke of York Square hidden under a bright pink cover leaving the children of London eager to see the beautiful design that dressed her. As HRH Duchess of Cornwall arrived to ceremoniously unveil Tara, the children beamed with excitement. Screams and laughter echoed throughout the Duke of York Square as Tara was revealed and standing next to her was a mini-me named Ella.
The people of London were excited to learn that Tara and Ella would be there for the entire month of June as playmates to the children and beautiful art pieces for the adults. Following the unveiling, six readings of excerpts from Mark Shand’s best-selling book Travels on my Elephant, took place by special guests including Philip Colbert, HRH Princess Eugenie, Stephen Fry, Annabel and Simon Elliot, and Philip Womack. Over 100 children of five different schools were happy to hear fun facts and jokes about all things elephants.
PHILIP COLBERT – Artist and Fashion Designer
Philip Colbert is a fashion designer and artist who established The Rodnik Band label in 2008 and later also co-founded Rodnik Fashion. He has attracted celebrity clients including Anna Dello Russo, Karl Lagerfeld, Sienna Miller and Cara Delevigne and was dubbed “the Godson of Andy Warhol” by Andre Leon Talley. Known for his pop art signature look, Philip Colbert will be the artist who will paint the winning design on Ella where the elephant will be put up for auction at Sotheby’s New York later this year.
STEPHEN FRY – Comedian, Actor, Writer and Activist
A scholar and respectable writer, Stephen Fry has become an iconic figure worldwide. He studied English literature, graduating with upper second-class honours from Queen’s college, Cambridge. A licensed pilot who owns a bi-plane and tech savvy Macintosh Fanatic, Stephen Fry has caught the eyes of many in the Telegraph’s list of the 100 most powerful people in British culture.
ANNABEL ELLIOT – Interior Designer and Antique Dealer
Annabelle Elliot, a stylish and highly respected Interior Designer and Antiques Dealer, is sister of Camilla, HRH Duchess of Cornwall. Mrs. Elliot was recognized as the 5th most influential female interior designer in Britain by the Daily Telegraph. In addition, she has been a patron of the British Association for Adaption and Fostering since 2005 as well as a life member and patron of Elephant Family.
PRINCESS EUGENIE – Princess Eugenie of York
Princess Eugenie is daughter of Prince Andrew and cousin of Princess Diana. She moved to NYC to work at the auction firm Paddle8 as a benefits manager and supports the Teenage Cancer Trust. She has a unique style with a vast collection of intriguing hats.
PHILLIP WOMACK – Novelist and Reviewer
A prolific writer who graduated from Oxford University, Phillip Womack is a novelist who has written for the Daily Telegraph, The Times, The Spectator and The First Post. His first novel, The Other Book was published in 2008 and his second novel The Liberators was published in 2010. His most recent works are The Darkening Path Trilogy: The Broken King, Vol 1; The King’s Shadow, vol.2, published in 2015 The Double Axe, a retelling of the Minotaur story, and The Kings Revenge to be published in 2016. Phillip loves lightly toasted buttered muffins and has a dog named Una.
The heartwarming stories about Tara from Travels on My Elephant left London’s children feeling inspired and educated. We look forward to continue bringing awareness and calling to action everyone to join the Elephant Family’s mission: To save the Asian Elephant .
“ I know that the children absolutely loved the event and felt very privileged to be asked. I would say they were completely enthralled!”
- Liz Croft-Baker, Eaton House School