Chinese Twinning Lion - Porcelion

A delegation of senior political leaders from the Jiangxi province of China visited Bath recently to further cultural and economic links between Bath and the Chinese region, home to 44 million residents and famous throughout China for over 1800 years for its production of fine porcelain china.

Jiang Ruming, Francine Haeberling, Julia Davey, "Porcelion" and children from St Stephen's Church Primary School

Porcelion was sponsored by Bath & North East Somerset Council as a gesture of friendship between the World Heritage city and Jiangxi province.  The original design was created in Jiangxi and then sent over to Bath for Julia Davey, a Bath-based ceramic artist, to paint onto the sleek contours of the lion!  Julia also decorated a replica mini-lion, which was presented to the delegation and has since flown over to China to start his new life in Jiangxi!

Mir Cat - the international peace lion

As well as Chinese and French twinning lions, the pride is proud to welcome an international peace lion painted by well known Russian artist, Lada Pestetsova.

Lada with Cllr Marian McNeir MBE and Mir Cat

Lada flew over to Bath for five days especially to paint one of the Lions of Bath pride.  Within minutes of arriving in Bath she set to work decorating her lion and hardly stopped painting, apart from a brief tour of the city and visiting Bath Abbey as a guest at the Mayor Making ceremony.  As soon as Mir Cat's final brushstrokes had dried, Lada was off again on a flight back to Moscow! 

The Russian link was as a result of a trip to Moscow and Siberia by Cllr Marian McNeir MBE, who is also Chairman of the Aix-Bath Twinning Committee, who met Lada at a function in Moscow and invited her over to Bath to decorate one of the pride!

As the Russian word for peace is "Mir", and as Meerkats are very popular creatures at the moment, the name "Mir Cat" seemed an ideal choice for this beautifully painted, abstract lion sculpture.  Mir Cat can now be seen in pride of place guarding the entrance hall of the Guildhall.


Aix-ellent lion - My Roots

Another of Bath's twin cities is  Aix-en-Provence in France.  A couple of months ago a blank lion was waved off from the steps of the Guildhall in Bath by the Mayor and children from St Martin's Garden Primary School, at the start of his long journey down to the south of France

"My Roots" was displayed in the historic centre of Aix-en-Provence throughout June before being shipped back to Bath where he was installed in the Alkmaar Gardens in Orange Grove (named after another of Baht's twin cities, Alkmaar in Holland) and was unveiled by Cllr Marian McNeir MBE and Aix en Provence representative Caroline Claverie.

My Roots reflects the faces of Africa, the lion's main natural habitat, the other being in India where the smaller Asiatic lions are only found in an area known as the Gir Forest, where only a few hundred of the species remain.


- Mir Cat - Painted by Lada Pestretsova from Russia who flew over at the invitation of the City of Bath Charter trustees.  Lada, who is a well know artist from Moscow, came to Bath for 5 days in June just to paint her lion and once the last brush strokes had dried she was off again back to Moscow!

NB. "Mir" means "peace" in Russian, hence Mir Cat!

- My Roots - our French connection, painted by Fabien Debos, also sponsored by the City of Bath Charter Trustees.

- Porcelion - Sponsored by Bath & North East Somerset Council, Porcelion was designed by Professor Li Leiying of Jiangxi, and painted by Julia Davey from Bath.