The Toads Of Hull And Finding My Prince

Larkin with Toads of Hull is a largest ever public art project that displays the giant, artist-decorated and colorful Toad Sculptures!

The Toads Of Hull And Finding My Prince

In 2010, Sylvia and I went on an Adventure to Hull in Yorkshire. I heard about the Toads of Hull, a city wide art project celebrating the life and art work of Phillip Larkin. I am a huge fan of art and sculptures and so it was an adventure I was keen to go on.

Toads of Hull

For three months, from 21st July to 25th September 2010, the streets of hull were populated with 40 giant, colourful, artist-decorated Toad sculptures. This formed an exciting trail and adventure for anyone wanting to visit the toads so off we went on our own toad finding mission.

Toads of Hull

Sylvia and I jumped on a train from West Yorkshire and travelled to Hull. I was at the time a single mother and hoping to find my own prince one day. They say if you kiss a toad or frog he may just turn into a prince and so we went on a mother and daughter adventure pretending the toads would change if we gave them a hug or cuddle.

toads of hull

I was on my own with Sylvia so I did my usual trick and asked passers by to take photos of us together and then took some images of Sylvia on my own. We did a few pictures “pretending to kiss the toads” which turned out quite well in my opinion.

Toads of Hull

Sylvia wore my favourite froggy dress which she often wore at that age. I loved that dress and I still have it to this day. She travelled a lot in the frog dress and it was for me a lucky dress that reminds me of our fun times together.

Toads of Hull

The Toads of Hull were really artistic and great to look at. They were fun to find and it really was a fun little adventure for Sylvia and I. She had such a fantastic day.

Toads of Hull

I miss my little girl being young and being well enough to go on adventures regular. I’m hoping in the future and in school holidays we can visit some new and interesting places.

Toads of Hull

It took 3 years after this visit to Hull to find my special prince. I married a Yorkshire man in 2013 and it was wonderful for John to join our little family.

Toads of Hull

It has been an amazing experience being married but also tough as I’ve been unwell a lot of the time and not able to do many of the things I love. I am working on it though doing my best to get as healthy as I can with Adrenal Insufficiency.

Toads of Hull

My favourite toad was the one outside the train station. He was a kind of strange gothic looking one with a nose pin and union jack coat. I liked his green tones. This toad had been damaged by the pubic but was getting mended. He was supposed to have a red Mohawk but it had been broken.

Toads of Hull

Our trip visiting the Toads of Hull was super fun and although the toads were removed I am aware of other sculptures which pop up from time to time in the UK and would love to take Sylvia on another Sculpture adventure at some point.

Toads of Hull

Have you ever been on a sculpture adventure? It really can be very fun.

Angela x

Larkin with Toads of Hull is a largest ever public art project that displays the giant, artist-decorated and colorful Toad Sculptures!

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71 Comments

  1. January 23, 2017 / 12:05 am

    I loved seeing these photos of you and baby Sylvia. Darling!! Yes, I’m looking forward to your future adventures with your family. I’ve never been on a sculpture adventure😮

    • Angela
      January 23, 2017 / 12:17 am

      It was so so fun! I really want to go on another this year! 🙂

  2. January 23, 2017 / 2:39 pm

    I want the frog dress for myself its adorable, I have always wanted to go to Hull. What a fun adventure that you went on!

    • Angela
      January 23, 2017 / 3:23 pm

      It is super cute! It’s home made!

  3. January 23, 2017 / 3:56 pm

    What a cutie your little one is! This sounds like a great memory. I think of the one’s pictures I like the tiger frog best.

    • Angela
      January 23, 2017 / 4:03 pm

      Yes the tiger frog is pretty cool!

  4. hannah
    January 23, 2017 / 6:03 pm

    The toads look great. I love all the different designs of them

    • Angela
      January 23, 2017 / 6:12 pm

      Thanks Hannah. They were fun to visit.

  5. January 23, 2017 / 8:11 pm

    What a great trail and it looks like you had lots of fun doing it. We had something similar with shaun the sheep statues that the kids loved to do. I think these trails are also a great way to see parts of the city/towns/places we may otherwise not have seen! x

    • Angela
      January 24, 2017 / 2:51 am

      It sure was fun. 🙂

  6. January 23, 2017 / 8:53 pm

    Aw you two look so sweet together! I haven’t been on a sculpture adventure before! I will have to try and find out if there are any in my area.

    • Angela
      January 24, 2017 / 2:52 am

      Thanks Chloe. It was fun! I want to see what’s around these days too!

  7. January 23, 2017 / 8:55 pm

    I’ve not done it completely, but looks so much fun! Know they have done similar things in Southampton, Aberdeen and Dundee too. I know all projects benefited charity too x

    • Angela
      January 24, 2017 / 2:53 am

      Yes I heard about the one in Scotland!

  8. January 23, 2017 / 9:19 pm

    What a fun adventure this must have been and you must love to look back at these photos and remember the special time you had with your little girl. I hope you are able to find another sculpture adventure to go on soon. I’ve not done one myself but I would definitely enjoy it!

    • Angela
      January 24, 2017 / 2:57 am

      It was really fun!

  9. January 23, 2017 / 10:17 pm

    Oh I love the toads, I love them all not sure which would be my favourite one quite like the tiger toad x

    • Angela
      January 24, 2017 / 2:56 am

      It’s hard to decide which is the best. They are all so unique and different.

  10. January 23, 2017 / 10:21 pm

    Oh look at baby Sylvia, so sweet. I loved viewing these photos and I also hope you can find some more adventures to do xo

    • Angela
      January 24, 2017 / 2:56 am

      She was so sweet as a baby. Still is but sometimes i miss my baby girl!

  11. January 23, 2017 / 11:35 pm

    So sorry to hear you struggle with health issues. I do as well so I can relate. I love the frogs! What a grand adventure for you and Sylvia!

    • Angela
      January 24, 2017 / 2:55 am

      It’s been tough but yes we did have a fantastic time!

  12. January 24, 2017 / 5:16 am

    I’ve never seen anything like this where I live (U.S.). I wish we did have something like this. It would have made a grand adventure with my boys. I like your favorite toad the best.

    • Angela
      January 26, 2017 / 7:28 pm

      We must both have good taste. There must be something unique and different in every country. I think at sculptures are becoming popular in the UK.

  13. Lynne Harper
    January 24, 2017 / 8:48 am

    Oh my goodness the toads are incredible, i need the NASA one lol. Fabulous pictures and what a great day out for you and Sylvia x

    • Angela
      January 26, 2017 / 7:28 pm

      Yes the NASA one was really cool. That’s the first one we found it was outside the train station.

  14. January 24, 2017 / 9:38 am

    It’s nice that they decorated each one differently, it’s like the cows in Birmingham x

    • Angela
      January 26, 2017 / 7:27 pm

      It really is a great celebration of art.

  15. January 24, 2017 / 9:57 am

    I visited a few of the Elephants and Cows when they were in London a few years ago x

    • Angela
      January 26, 2017 / 7:27 pm

      That sounds really cool. I think it’s brilliant to be up to go and take photographs of the sculptures.

  16. January 24, 2017 / 11:17 am

    It looks like a fun day out with little Sylvia! How fun to go sculpture hunting with a little one. x

    • Angela
      January 26, 2017 / 7:26 pm

      We had a lot of fun when she was a small and went on a lot of adventures.

  17. January 24, 2017 / 12:08 pm

    I’ve seen similar sculpture ideas around my local town and I think they’re such a fun activity for kids to enjoy

    • Angela
      January 26, 2017 / 7:26 pm

      They really are a fantastic activity and a great way to get kids involved with art.

  18. January 24, 2017 / 1:10 pm

    What a fun adventure, and you finally kissed enough toads to find that special prince at the end. bet it was so worth it! 😉 x

    • Angela
      January 24, 2017 / 6:08 pm

      I sure did lol! I found the perfect prince too!

  19. January 24, 2017 / 3:24 pm

    Oh what a fab time you had and the toads look amazing x

    • Angela
      January 24, 2017 / 6:04 pm

      they sure do! It was fun! Great memories.

  20. January 24, 2017 / 5:59 pm

    These are so cool – I remember a similar ‘Shaun the Sheep’ project that happened, with sheep popping up all over the city. Sounds like a lovely adventure for Sylvia to enjoy 🙂

    • Angela
      January 24, 2017 / 6:04 pm

      I heard of that one! I would have loved to visit the sheep ones!

  21. January 24, 2017 / 6:25 pm

    I love different art work as well! The frogs look so beautiful and adorable! Looks like you all had fun exploring the colorful frogs!

    • Angela
      January 26, 2017 / 7:25 pm

      The Frogs were adorable. I love seeing them all and I particularly love the tiger one.

  22. francesca
    January 24, 2017 / 7:13 pm

    oh we had something similar need us too actually!! We had different elephants and they were literally everywhere!!!

    • Angela
      January 26, 2017 / 7:26 pm

      Yes I keep hearing about these elephant ones. I bet it was brilliant.

    • Angela
      January 26, 2017 / 7:25 pm

      Thanks Harriet. She was such a cute little baby and toddler.

  23. January 24, 2017 / 8:23 pm

    I love this! We had the Owls in Birmingham which were just lovely, and I know something else is on the way this summer.

    • Angela
      January 26, 2017 / 7:24 pm

      I will look it up then maybe we can pop down to Birmingham in the summer. That would be cool.

  24. January 24, 2017 / 9:47 pm

    That’s awesome – we had elephants just like that round London a few years ago and everyone was on a hunt to take photos with them all. Love the one that looks like a tiger! So cool!

    • Angela
      January 26, 2017 / 7:22 pm

      I never knew about the elephants. The more I hear about other ones the more i want to go find more.

  25. Jemma
    January 25, 2017 / 1:32 pm

    Awww how adorable! This looks like a lovely thing to do with the little ones.

    • Angela
      January 26, 2017 / 7:22 pm

      Yes it was super fun.

  26. Lubka Henry
    January 25, 2017 / 4:04 pm

    This is such a nice story and Sylvia looked so cute as she was little. I’m really happy you’ve found the prince for you too 🙂

    • Angela
      January 26, 2017 / 7:22 pm

      Thanks Lubka. I am very blessed.

  27. January 25, 2017 / 8:27 pm

    Oh, baby Sylvia! Living in London every time they do something like this we go and search them out, my daughter loves it xx

    • Angela
      January 26, 2017 / 7:21 pm

      Very cool. I’m going to be keeping an eye out for the next one!

  28. Ruxandra
    January 25, 2017 / 8:28 pm

    You both are so adorable! There was a similar project here in Luxembourg, but with elefants!

    • Angela
      January 26, 2017 / 7:20 pm

      i’m discovering new sculptures in different places from writing this post. We so have to go and do another soon.

  29. January 25, 2017 / 8:36 pm

    Awww its so cute seeing her little baby face! The toads are pretty impressive – we had something similar down in Southampton with Zany Zebras.

    • Angela
      January 26, 2017 / 7:20 pm

      oh cool. I have not heard of the zebras!

    • Angela
      January 26, 2017 / 7:19 pm

      It can make for a fun day out.

  30. January 26, 2017 / 1:27 am

    These toads are too cool and creative and make for a great treasure hunt around a city.
    Love this

    Laura x

    • Angela
      January 26, 2017 / 7:19 pm

      They are very creative and I love that others helped to make them too!

  31. January 26, 2017 / 5:12 pm

    This is cute, we had the same sort of thing this year in Sheffield , actually no last year I kept forgetting the year hahaha.

    • Angela
      January 26, 2017 / 7:18 pm

      Very cool. I think sculptures make the world a more interesting place.

  32. January 26, 2017 / 10:10 pm

    I currently live in Hull whilst at university and I know they have the moths now as part of the city of culture which are funny to spot! I didn’t know they had done toads before now though!

    • Angela
      January 26, 2017 / 10:57 pm

      Oh how cool. I did not know about the moths!

  33. January 31, 2017 / 8:03 pm

    These toads are all so cute.I love the different designs of them.

  34. Lyndsey
    February 2, 2017 / 1:44 am

    Awww so cute it looked like a completely lovely day! L x

    • Angela
      February 2, 2017 / 3:56 am

      Thanks. We sure did have fun back then,

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