A couple of weeks ago, whilst searching for things to do in London on my afternoon off, I came across a trail. A scavenger hunt if you will. It was called the BFG Dream Jar Trail, and it was made up of 50 giant sized jars spread across the city.
I’m yet to see the latest adaption of Roald Dahl’s classic, but I vaguely remember the animated movie, and if I’m not mistaken, the Dream Jars were filled with dreams the BFG created to give to children.
Well, these giant jars were also filled with dreams, but they already had owners. These dreams belonged to the famous; Steven Spielberg, Stephen Hawking, Helen Mirren, Buzz Aldrin. The list goes on.
As a lover of challenges and pretty things, I set out to find as many jars as I could, and in the process came across some beautiful artwork and inspiring stories. I managed to find just over 10 in total, so wanted to share the ones I came across:
Sweet Dreams | Stephen Spielberg
The director’s dream jar in Leicester Square was the first one I found. It held a young Spielberg, holding an ice cream cone piled high with brightly coloured sweets. It was beautifully vibrant, but the thing I loved most about it was its message – Dream Big. Children naturally dream big, but the premise shouldn’t be kid exclusive. We all need to have big dreams.
Once Upon a Dream | Angelababy
I’m not hugely familiar with Ying Yang, or Angelababy as she is better known. I’ve only ever seen her in Independence Day: Resurgence – she played female pilot Rain Lao. That being said, I came across her dream jar in Chinatown, and it instantly became my favourite, because – Sailor Moon. Her jar depicts a dream for peace and happiness, so who better to feature than the Queen of kick ass.
Believe in Extraordinary | Team GB
With the Olympics having only just come to an end, a trip to Trafalgar Square to see the Team GB dream jar seemed too good to miss. Every time one of the GB athletes earned a medal in Rio, it was represented in the jar. The phrase ‘believe in extraordinary’ is ingrained into every Olympic athletes’ mind, but anyone can be extraordinary.
The Merry Go Round | Mark Rylance
You can’t do a BFG trail without visiting a dream from the Big Friendly Giant himself. Actor Mark Rylance voices the BFG in Spielberg’s latest movie adaption, so his jar took center stage at Parliament Square. Rylance’s dream was probably the most obscure one I came across. It held a carousel inside a glass house, surrounded by friends. I have no idea what it meant, but it was certainly interesting.
Mayor of Dreamland | Cllr. Robert Davis
I came across this one by chance whilst on route to Buckingham Palace. The dream belongs to the former Mayor of Westminster, who dreams of becoming Mayor of the perfect city. It depicts him in mayoral robes standing in front of said dream city – which appears to be nothing more than a castle in the clouds, so I’m not sure he want’s many people to join him in utopia.
Innocence | The Countess of Wessex
This adorable dream jar shows a little girl on a swing, and depicts the dream of Sophie, Countess of Wessex – wife to Prince Edward – who seeks to protect children from the threats they face via the internet. I love the simplicity of the design, though I’m not entirely sure that it represents her dream very well.
Read | The Duchess of Cornwall
Another one of my favourites, this jar holds a selection of children standing on a pile of books whilst reading their favourites. Like the Innocence jar, it’s a lovely pure white colour, which contrasted amazingly with the green of St James’ Park. As an avid reader, Camilla’s dream is for every child to learn how to read, and have the resources to continue to do so – a thought that is equally close to my heart.
A Stitch in Time Saves Nine | Jenny Peckham
I came across this jar outside Monument Station, and although it’s not the most interesting, it was very pretty and delicately designed. As an acclaimed stylist, Jenny’s dream is to continue to create beautiful garments with immense passion. Her jar holds strings of pearls and beads in pastel colours.
The Heart Takes Over | David Weir
This incredibly inspirational dream jar was created by Paralympic athlete David Weir, who has won six gold medals in his time. His dream is for others to triumph over physical adversity, just like he did. He believes that no one should give up on what they want in life. If at first you don’t succeed, try try again.
Home is Where the Heart is | Dominic West
West is probably best known for playing Detective Jimmy McNulty in The Wire, but he’s also a supporter of many charities, including Save the Children, which he dedicated his dream to. He wants every child to have a safe place to live and play, with safe water and food. His jar contained a house – one side demolished, and the other side homely. It was an incredibly heart felt and detailed representation.
I Dream of the Universe | Stephen Hawking
This was the last dream jar I saw, and was probably the one I was most excited about seeing. In true Stephen Hawking’s style, he focused on the scientific aspect of dreaming – its concept – asking ‘how do we know if we are living our dreams or reality’. The jar itself represents Chinese Philosopher Zhuangzi, who dreamed of becoming a butterfly, but wasn’t sure whether he was actually a butterfly dreaming of becoming a man.
I managed to find 11 jars in the end, spread all the way across London. Unfortunately the trail ended at the end of last month, but from the 31st August, all the dream jars will be auctioned off for a good cause. Has anyone else taken part in the Dream Jar Trail? Which one was your favourite?