THE sale of the giraffes that have created a popular trail around Worcester, raised £210,000.

This was nearly £100,000 more than Worcester Stands Tall's target of £120,000.

There was a massive turnout for the grand auction, where 30 giraffes were the star attraction one last time as they went under the hammer.

The 8 ft tall Worcester Stands Tall giraffes were decorated by artists from around the county and placed in locations around the various locations in the summer.

Smaller calves were on show in Crowngate during the summer and they returned to the schools and community groups that were decorated except for one of them, Lily the Pink, which was also up for auction.

Sponsors, business representatives and private individuals enjoyed a buffet and drink before the start of the auction, held at Drp Group’s Hartlebury headquarters at 7pm on Thursday night.

The event was hosted by Free Radio’s Tom Newett and Hursty, and featured Flog it! And Bargain Hunt auctioneer Philip Serrell.

The event was live streamed, with the hundreds in attendance up against phone and online bids.

Thousands of pounds in bids went in by bidders eager to snap up each of the giraffes, that were unveiled on a conveyor belt to dramatic music, smoke and lights.

Sara Matthews, project manager of Worcester Stands Tall, said: “Worcester Stands Tall has easily been the biggest event St Richards Hospice has ever held.

“If we were to hold an event of this nature again, ultimately tonight will determine that. If we did it would be in 2020, but we will have to wait and see.

“It has had massive support – we have 3,000 people just at the Cathedral's farewell event."

Mr Serrell said: “We are so lucky to have St Richard’s Hospice, serving our county.

“Worcestershire is important to me. I’m very, very proud to do this. It's just fantastic.

“My job is easy, because people are so generous in supporting the hospice. It makes you feel very humble."

All proceeds raised at the auction went to St Richard’s Hospice’s Build 2020 appeal – a planned £5.3m expansion and redevelopment to support patients and families.