Facelift Access Hire has recently got involved with a more unusual London project alongside the Olympics. London’s HATWALK project has been commissioned by the Mayor of London in partnership with BT, Grazia, The British Fashion Council and the London 2012 Festival.
This event has been a year in the making and is curated by the world renowned British milliners, Stephen Jones and Philip Treacy – bringing together 21 emerging and established designers, to show British millinery at its finest. The event culminated in Trafalgar Square on 30th July and saw some of London’s most iconic statues in their splendour, with the addition of brand new bespoke hats.
Facelift came to the rescue to help the millinery operation, in the dead of night, complete with HGV powered access assistance – cherry pickers included the Bronto 61, Bronto 52 and Ascendants 22s and 17s. With Facelift’s help a "hatwalk" trail has been formed, from the Angel of Peace on top the Wellington Arch near Hyde Park in the west of the city, to the Duke of Wellington outside the Bank of England in the Square Mile. This trail features twenty adorned statues altogether including; Lord Nelson and George the IV in Trafalgar Square Roosevelt and Churchill in Bond Street, Isambard Kingdom Brunel and Robert Burns on the Embankment, William Shakespeare in Leicester Square and Beau Brummell in Jermyn Street.
The company providing the hat for Nelson is Lock & Co – the oldest hatters in London, established in 1676 and renowned for making Nelson’s original bicorn hat. Lock & Co has now created an updated version of Nelson’s bicorn hat, complete with Olympic torch to celebrate the event.
Chairman Nigel Lock Macdonald said: "Locks are very proud of their history and making another hat for Nelson over 200 years after we made the original has been an unexpected honour."
Not only does this project illustrate how London is the global capital of millinery and shows the city’s rich heritage by bringing these well known statues to life – but when the display has finished, all hats will be auctioned off to raise money for the Mayor’s Fund for good causes.
HATWALK is part of ‘Surprises’ – an event organised by The Mayor of London that includes cultural events and activities across London, to add to the excitement of the games – where pop-up performances and once in a lifetime experiences spring up at locations across London throughout this summer.
The Lord Mayor Boris Johnson says;
"You’ve got to take your hats off to London. Our city is a melting pot of creativity right at the forefront of global fashion and design. The cutting edge style and imagination of London’s millinery talent is feted worldwide, and is setting the international catwalks alight. I can’t think of a better way to celebrate the heritage of British millinery and its contribution to our fair city than by dressing our most noble of statues, including our most heroic son, Nelson in creations dreamt up by our leading visionaries. In this summer like no other, we have come up with a series of spectacular surprises and once-in-a-lifetime experiences that will be popping up throughout the capital. HATWALK is just one of these, so keep your eyes peeled for what’s coming next!" – Boris Johnson, Mayor of London.