LEUCHIE House is gearing up to launch the much-anticipated Big Hare Trail, with six-foot-high colourful sculptures descending on North Berwick from next Saturday (July 10).

Leuchie House, a respite charity based just outside the town, is launching the trail as part of its celebrations for its 10th anniversary of independent charity status.

From next Saturday for 10 weeks, until September 18, the colourful hare sculptures will be a feature in various parts of the town centre, with 10 individually decorated by selected artists in a unique style at Whitekirk Hill.

East Lothian Courier: Leuchie House CEO Mark Bevan with his wife and daughter, Carrie and FreyaLeuchie House CEO Mark Bevan with his wife and daughter, Carrie and Freya

As well as helping the community recover from lockdown, it is also aiming to raise money for Leuchie House, which supports and provides respite to those living with a range of neurological conditions and those who care for them.

The trail is being delivered by Wild in Art, which has worked on similar projects across Scotland, such as the Oor Wullie Bucket Trail.

Hares were chosen as one of the most popular and high-profile animals native to East Lothian.

At the end of the 10 weeks, each sculpture will be auctioned off in the autumn and the money donated to Leuchie House.

East Lothian Courier: One of the finished haresOne of the finished hares

Mark Bevan, Leuchie House CEO, said: “After the immense challenges we have all faced over the last year, this fantastic public art event is our way of saying thank you to the community and those who have supported Leuchie.

“We are proud to shout from the rooftops that at Leuchie we are ‘Hare to Stay’ following this challenging period.”

The Hare Trail project has attracted the support of a number of businesses, including Simpson and Marwick, whose managing partner Rob Aberdein said: “I’m based in East Lothian with my young family and our firm has an office in North Berwick, so I know only too well what a wonderful place it is to live, work and visit.

“That’s why we are so proud to be the presenting partner for The Big Hare Trail.

“This event will reinforce East Lothian’s identity as a vibrant centre of art and culture and showcase it to the widest possible audience.”

The town’s business association, made up of mostly High Street shops, also collectively sponsored a hare, as did North Berwick Trust, the Walk With Scott Foundation and several businesses.

READ MORE: Hares heading to North Berwick

A range of local community groups have also offered their support.

For example, North Berwick in Bloom is carrying out weekly maintenance around each hare and the Bass Rock Community Group is volunteering at the Trailmakers Tent at the Lodge Grounds every Saturday; it will allow people to find out more information about the trail and receive maps of the route.

For more information, including a trail map and on how to become a volunteer, visit thebigharetrail.co.uk