SHOPPERS are being greeted by giant bugs as part of an event to reconnect people with nature.

Visitors at intu Lakeside Shopping Centre can came face-to-face with bugs including beetles and butterflies.

Big bugs on tour launches will be at Lakeside on until July 29, giving the shoppers of Essex a chance to examine the features of these magnificent creatures without the need for a magnifying glass.

The event comes as new research has revealed that being closer to nature makes people 67 per cent happier, but one in six kids have not seen a single bug in six months.

intu’s initiative is being backed by naturalist Chris Packham and features 12 supersized, indigenous bugs including the honeybee, ladybird, hornet, swallowtail butterfly and the nut weevil.

Roger Binks, customer experience director for intu, said: “We know that a closer connection to nature makes people happier and Big bugs on tour is an opportunity to help educate adults and children on the importance of the bugs in their gardens and put a smile on their faces. Over 35 million people shop at intu centres every year so we hope bringing them face-to-face with these giant British bugs can make a real impact in how they interact and reconnect with nature, and ensure they are happier than when they arrived.”