Tarka the lucky otter has been officially unveiled on Bideford Quay. A crowd gathered to watch as Bideford mayor and mayoress David and Louise Howell whipped the red cover off the bronze-cast otter on Saturday. An appeal was launched last year by Bideford Town Centre Partnership to fund £15,000 for the statue, which now sits next to the longbridge. The town council pledged half of the money, with other funding coming from Businesses of Bideford (BOB) and Bideford and District Chamber of Commerce, as well as Section 106 developer contributions received by Torridge District Council. Tarka was created by artist Rowan Fawdon of Bude-based Ash Tree Pottery. A plaque to accompany the artwork, which is which is one-and-a-half-times the size of a real otter, was made by J Short & Son Ltd of Bideford. Tonia Quance, of BOB said: We are so pleased that we have been able to move this project along so quickly from the conceptual idea in February. With Tarka the Otter being set upon the Torridge, we thought it was the perfect spot for the statue. People will be able to sit on the wall next to him and take photographs. A new Facebook page has been set up to encourage people to share their snaps with Tarka. If you take a photo with Tarka, you can also upload it to our iWitness24 website to be in with a chance of featuring in the paper.