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Pollen-filled Rowan Atkinson statues to raise awareness of endangered bees

By Taruka Srivastava | Freelance journalist

June 27, 2022 | 4 min read

The British Bee Charity has teamed up with Netflix to create a series of life-sized ‘Growin Atkinson’ sculptures, filled with pollen and nectar-rich wildflowers, to promote Rowan Atkinson-fronted Netflix series Man vs Bee.

The trio of ‘bee-edible’ sculptures, which are lookalikes of the comic actor, launched on the grounds of London’s St Paul’s Cathedral and are filled with sustainable bee-friendly foodstuffs catering to all species of native pollinators. They are packed with plants ranging from helianthus to petunia.

Research was commissioned by the charity and the streamer, which showed that more than a third (35%) of Brits have already noticed massive declines in bee populations in their local areas this summer, with experts believing that as many as 17 species of UK bee are now extinct and many more are at risk.

Rowan Atkinson's pollen filled sculptures to raise awareness about endangered bees

Rowan Atkinson’s pollen-filled sculptures are to raise awareness about endangered bees

Two-thirds of people in the UK (66%) are now more worried than ever about the decline of our native species of bee, but seven in 10 of us can only identify the common honey or bumble, even though there are over 250 species in the UK. Three in 10 people have no idea why bees are important to the environment, with half (50%) of the population having no clue what biodiversity is.

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With just over two-thirds (67%) putting the decline of bees in their area down to natural habitat loss, the British Bee Charity and Netflix are encouraging people to take positive action this summer and asking the public to plant as many as 4,000 additional square meters of wildflowers across the capital through the giveaway of wildflower seeds.

Atkinson said: “My alter ego, Trevor, may go to battle with a bee, but personally I’m pleased to have these eccentric statues help raise awareness of the plight of native British bees in this country. [They are] packed with pollen, nectar and flowering plants to help raise a smile, make people consider the environment and create something of a bee buffet in an effort to help them survive the summer.”

Greg Bool from the British Bee Charity added: “For the most part, people know that honey comes from bees, but few realize there are over 250 species of bumble bees and solitary bees in the UK. With so many people now aware that bees need help, there’s been an upsurge in the number of honeybee hives in the UK when perhaps we should be educating people on providing more pollen-rich flowers and plants for hungry bees and pollinators.

“This is why we have partnered with Netflix to create a series of bee-friendly edible flower planters in British national treasure Rowan Atkinson’s likeness to mark the launch of Man vs Bee, while raising awareness of how to support the plight of native species of British bees and pollinators at the same time.”

Netflix previously created a hive billboard to unleash giant bees upon Manchester to promote the new series.

Pollen-filled Rowan Atkinson statues raise awareness about endangered bees
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