Look out - lambs on the loose!

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HAVE you seen Linford and Lucy lamb?

The tiny toys have been popping up here, there and everywhere around the Borough...and further afield.

For the two Beanie Boo toys belong to Portstewart woman Stevie O’Neill who has been photographing the furry duo to raise awareness of the charity Aware Defeat Depression.

And, she has persuaded family and friends to take the Beanie Boos to all manner of locations, snap their pictures and post them on Facebook as a fun way of raising awareness of how many people suffer from depression and where they can find help.

Stevie explained that the idea came about while she was out walking, training for last year’s Clare’s Causeway Challenge walk which was held in memory of her sister who had been suffering from depression.

“I had gotten into the habit of going for long scenic walks around our beautiful coastline in preparation for Clare’s Causeway Challenge. Even though the event had been a great success with hundreds of enthusiasts turning out in support, I still enjoyed going off around the coastal route, hail, rain or shine.

“On the way back from a trip to Fair Head in Ballycastle, my companions and I had to cross a field where some sheep were grazing. The leader of the flock led the rest in a large group and came chasing after us. I was glad to eventually escape from this nightmarish experience and vowed to keep clear of rural life in future.

“Later that evening I came across some Beanie Boo lambs in the supermarket and, for a laugh, I lined a bunch of them up on the floor and snapped them on my phone to send to my fellow walkers.

“I couldn’t resist buying one and so Linford was born. I then began creating little scenarios and posting them on Facebook attracting a lot of interest.”

And it wasn’t long before others became involved.

Coleraine man Gary Tosh took Linford right to the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro as he completed a trek there in aid of Aware Defeat Depression.

As Linford was away touring the world, Stevie decided she needed a substitute to keep up the momentum at home so she acquired Lucy the lamb who was soon adorned with long luscious false eyelashes to add a touch of glamour.

Soon, Diamond Centre Miss Selfridge manager Cindy McKendry noticed the antics on Facebook and the Coleraine woman offered to take Lucy to Los Angeles on a trip she was planning.

Since then, Lucy and Linford have been on cruises to Italy, resplendent in specially-created sailor outfits.

They have met riders at the North West 200, Padraig Harrington at the Irish Open and posed at every available opportunity with everyone from Alan Simpson to BBC’s Steven Watson.

Lucy was even the target of a kidnapping when Stevie’s brother David held her to ransom until £100 was raised for Aware Defeat Depression.

“This is a light-hearted way of getting people talking and having a bit of fun,” added Stevie’s sister Angie.

“It might also ease the way for people to start talking about depression and raising awareness of Clare’s Causeway Challenge which will be held again this year on September 15 and 16 for Aware Defeat Depression.

“The Challenge this year is really about raising awareness of Aware Defeat Depression and if Linford and Lucy help with that, that’s great.”

You can keep up to date with the lambs’ larks via Facebook at Linford and Lucy Lamborghini where you will also find details at a later date of Clare’ s Causeway Challenge.

In the meantime, keep your eyes peeled as Lucy and Linford could well be visiting a town near you very soon...