She was created in 1987 when we who were to become the Dorchester Giants Group, invited two giants to star at a fun-day at Salisbury Fields in Dorchester. We invited Gogmagog from London and Christopher II from Salisbury. Clearly we needed a hostess; Lilbet. As it turned out the fun day was very nearly a disaster, gales blew all day, lots of equipment was damaged, Gogmagog did not parade and Christopher II fell over. Lilbet just survived, returning from her first outing in some distress, but only one piece.
Later that same year Lilbet was invited to Brussels for the weekend Breugelfest, and also attended a folk-festival at Wareham. The next year there were more invitations. The Dorchester Giants Group came into being almost by mistake!
Lilbet Large is a backpack style giant, she cannot stand unaided. The porter wears a modified rucksack frame. To the frame is attached the 'spine' of the giant, it's made of high density polyethylene tubing. The rest of the giant is fixed to the spine in imitation of the way in which the bones of the human skeleton are connected. Where a human has sinew, the giant has twine. The porter is hidden from view under a full skirt. there is a gauze 'window' in the front of the skirt through which the porter has a restricted view of the road ahead.
Lilbet can only be carried by a porter of about 6 feet tall (plus or minus a couple of inches) because of the length of her skirt. When carried by a typical porter, she stands about 10 feet 8 inches tall. Because she has no lower frame she can curtsey, pass through narrow entrances, and negotiate shallow steps. Because she cannot stand unaided she ( or rather her porter ) dislikes standing still.
Lilbet retired from active life in 1992 shortly after Caroline Moore appeared; they worked together at first, but Lilbet withdrew as soon as Caroline was able to take her place. Lilbet was designed to last for a single weekend. In the end she survived six eventful years during which she appeared Maastricht, Barcelona and Brussels, as well as events all over the UK.
Constructed 1987 by Derek Moody and Amanda Woodhouse.
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Last modified: Sat, 12 Feb 2000