A new “Corgi trail” was launched in Central London to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.
From Belgravia to Strand, 19 sculptures of corgis designed by contemporary artists have been placed in various gardens, stations, and hotels on a trail run by London HQ - the collective of Victoria, Victoria Westminster, Whitehall and Northbank Business Improvement Districts (BIDs).
The Queen, who celebrates her 70 years on the throne this year, has owned more than 30 corgis in her life.
Honey, Susan or Willow: the 19 statues on the trail were named after the Queen’s corgis.
For those who want to discover the trail “The Queen & Her Corgis”, a digital map is available on the Victoria and Northbank BIDs websites, and paper maps are distributed at the visitor’s information kiosk outside Victoria station, as well as in the different hotels where Corgis are hosted.
At the heart of Belgravia is the first Corgi of the trail: Honey, designed by Olivia Brotheridge.
Olivia is an illustrator who designed different maps for the Victoria and Northbank BIDs.
As she designed the official map for the Corgi trail, she was also invited to paint one of the Corgis herself.
She said: “It’s been so much fun to get off the computer and paint onto a 3D statue!”
Painted by Miya Tsuruda-Behan, this is Susan, named after the corgi the Queen received from her father for her 18th birthday.
Caroline Perry took inspiration from Elizabeth and Susan’s story to write her debut children's picture book “The Corgi and the Queen”, which will be released in January 2023.
When asked about Susan, the author said: “The little corgi was Elizabeth’s constant companion during the dark days of World War II, and the pair developed an extraordinary bond.
“Susan even accompanied Elizabeth and Prince Philip in their glass wedding coach as they rode across London, greeting the exultant crowds.
“Elizabeth didn’t want to be without her best friend on the biggest day of her life, so the dog was hidden under a rug on the carriage floor!
“Susan also joined the newlyweds on their honeymoon, and when her beloved pet died, the Queen wrote that she had ‘always dreaded losing her.’”
“Susan founded a regal dog dynasty! Fourteen generations of corgis were descended from her.”
- Caroline Perry, author of “The Corgi and the Queen”