AN auction is to be held to sell off octopus sculptures which have created an art trail.

The Octopus Ahoy! art works, which created a summer of fun across north Essex, will be raising money for the Essex Community Foundation and Tendring Community Fund.

All 30 large sculptures and a handful of smaller ones will go up for sale to the highest bidder in the hopes of raising £100,000.

The auction will take place next Thursday at Le Talbooth in Dedham and will be led by Colchester auctioneers Reeman Dansie.

The popular trail has seen more than 22 million steps taken by explorers with the sculptures being found more than 103,000 times.

Tendring councillor Alex Porter, who is responsible for leisure and tourism, said: “More than the data showing how many people have visited our district as a result of this, and how active they have been with millions of steps taken, the real measure of success has been the smiles on people’s faces as they picture themselves with the octopuses and what a talking point they became.

“I have heard of lots of families who have enjoyed taking on the trail, and well done to all those who became Octo-champions and found them all – that is no mean feat.

“The hope now is that people continue to be active and for those who perhaps visited Tendring – or new parts of it for them – for the first time will return due to those happy memories.

“Beyond that legacy we also have the upcoming sculpture auction which we hope will raise plenty of money for Tendring good causes.”

The colourful creatures were hidden in streets, parks and open spaces and had a QR code on them which could be scanned.

The most found sculpture by explorers was Octopirate, designed by artist Deven Bhurke and placed at the Clacton promenade, with 2,708 finds.

Sedna, which was created using found and donated crockery and sea glass around the Essex coastline, was voted the favourite octopus.

The art event, which was launched by KAT Marketing and Tendring Council, marked 400 years since the journey of the Mayflower from Harwich to the New World and 150 years since Clacton’s formation.

Katie Skingle, director of KAT Marketing, said: “The fantastic art pieces are bound to make tens of thousands of pounds for charity so all art lovers need to make sure to get their bids in early and book tickets to the auction to grab a slice of local history.”

For more information on the auction or to bid, go to