Introducing Oomka the Polar Bear

Following our call for children to send in their suggestions to name our new Polar Bear sculpture by Helen O'Connell, we are delighted to introduce to you to... Oomka!

The winning name was suggested by 12-year-old Sasha, who sent in the following story about why she thought Oomka would make the perfect name for our new bear:

My name is Sasha. I think your new polar bear should be named Oomka or Oomie. I am half russian and in Russia there is a cartoon about a white polar bear, Oomka. This was also my favourite dog's name, who was put down last Saturday. I love him so so so much! He was the best dog EVER!!!! I will miss him a lot and I think it would be great to name a polar bear just like him! See the picture attached - don't they look alike (Oomka the polar bear and my dog?)

The name was chosen from a shortlist of children's suggestions by sculptor Helen O'Connell. Helen was touched by Sasha's story, saying:

I had to put down my dog last year and remember how difficult that was. I hope Sasha can remember her doggie friend through Oomka the bear now!

Huge thanks to Sasha for sending in her story, as well as to all the other children who sent us their suggestions.

Although, due to level 5 restrictions now in place, we are currently unable to invite the public to meet Oomka in person, we look forward to doing so in the future when it is once again safe to do so. In the meantime, stay tuned for news as to how you'll be able to see more of Oomka and the other beautiful new artworks from our Winter Light exhibition online very soon.