Name: Lauren Buffery
Age: 24
Location: Sutton Coldfield, Birmingham
Occupation: Tattoo Apprentice/Bear Care Maintenance/Very recent graduate

Hi Lauren, thanks for talking to us today! Let’s kick things off with a fun fact about you?

I lived Vancouver Island over in Canada in 2014, where I worked in an International boarding school called Dwight School Canada. I worked as a live-in house assistant and also helped teach Art & Design!

Wow, that’s exciting! So, what is your involvement in The Big Sleuth?

My Big Sleuth journey started when I saw a piece on BBC Midlands Today, I thought it would be a great project to work on and to include as work towards my degree! I was initially quite disappointed as my design wasn’t picked during the first round of commissions sponsors, but then I got a phone call from Wild in Art saying that my design had been picked by B4 parking and everything changed!

That’s great, so then how did you become part of the Bear Care team?

I wanted to continue working closely within The Big Sleuth community as I just wasn’t ready to say goodbye to the bears! I love working with the Wild in Art team, it’s such a great opportunity and experience to work with a community of artists and creatives!

As a bear care team member, it is my responsibility to maintain the excellent standards of the bears by touching up any missing chips of paint, cracks or scratches on bears in my area. I also interact with the public and engage with those who are taking part in the trail as I carry out any maintenance work.

It’s an important job, and you’re doing grr-eat! What’s your favourite thing about the project?

My favourite thing about The Big Sleuth is the amount of sheer fun and joy I’ve had creating the bear and the people I’ve met, as well as the other opportunities that have come from it as well, such as joining the maintenance team, the networking and events such as the bear-illiant launch. Not to forget the lovely mini-launch party at my sponsor, B4 Parking!

Have you worked with Wild in Art before?

This is the first Wild in Art project I’ve been involved in with but hopefully not the last! I’m already looking at future projects such as GoGoHares in 2018!

How exciting! Do you have any connection to Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity?

It’s nice to give something back as I was treated there a few years ago, as I needed a small operation on my hand. The staff there looked after me brilliantly and their level of care and expertise was an experience I will always remember!

That’s grrr-eat to hear! So which is your favourite bear on the trail?

Other than my own, In Bloom, I’d have to say Mother Bear!

Good choice! Can you tell us a bear joke to leave us on a high?

What do you call a grizzly bear at the North Pole?
A: Lost!

Thanks so much Lauren, it’s been great talking to you!

Don’t be shy if you see Lauren out and about on The Big Sleuth trail, she’s very friendly and she might be able to tell you some interesting bear facts!