A HUGE angel statue made out of 100,000 knives has arrived in Hereford ahead of a month-long project.
After 18 months of preparation, the Knife Angel has arrived in the city centre ahead of four weeks of events aimed at raising awareness of knife crime and other forms of violence.
Also known as the National Monument Against Violence and Aggression, this 27ft statue is built from 100,000 confiscated knives and blades.
The statue will be in place outside Hereford Cathedral until Monday, July 12.
Thanks to grants from the West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner, West Mercia Police, The National Lottery Community Fund, the High Sheriffs of Herefordshire, Eveson Charitable Trust, Community Safety Partnership and the Clocktower Foundation, the Knife Angel team has been able to organise an exciting range of free-to-attend events.
Just popped down to the cathedral to see the Knife Angel Hereford.
— Cllr Daniel Powell 🔶 (@CllrDanPowell) June 14, 2021
The aim of these events is to stimulate discussion on the devastating impact violence has on all our lives.
The team responsible for bringing the Knife Angel to Hereford is headed by Alison Davies, who lost her son, Mark, to knife crime in 2018, and Meryl Cain.
Alison Davies said: “We encourage everyone to come and see this magnificent statue and to get involved in the events we have organised.
“The statue is incredibly moving to see and we are hoping that it will stimulate debate and discussion around the subject of violent crime and how to prevent it.
“Even after the Angel has left us, we are hoping to continue with a programme of legacy events, so that important messages regarding the futility of violent crime are continued into the future.
“We are truly grateful for all the support that we have received from our partners, sponsors and volunteers.”
The Knife Angel will be located outside the cathedral and will be free to visit with no need for visitors to book in advance.
Since its completion at The British Ironwork Centre in 2018, the Knife Angel has visited 11 towns and cities, from Gateshead to Rochester.
During the Knife Angel’s stay in Hereford, there will be:
- Series of free public workshops and events at the cathedral and venues in the city.
- National conference, engaging with professionals in related spheres. This will be an online, ticketed event.
- Youth conference, identifying young people’s needs and issues which they feel have a negative impact on them and their community.
- Weapon amnesty in operation for the duration of the Angel’s visit, approved by West Mercia Police, a secure weapon surrender bin travels with The Angel.
- Opening ceremony and closing vigil.
West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner John Campion said: “The Knife Angel has toured all over the UK, but its visit to Hereford is particularly poignant for me, with the statue being created in Oswestry at the British Ironwork Centre with knives, swords and other weapons seized from public spaces across West Mercia.
“I am proud of the amazing leadership of the British Ironwork Centre and I am pleased to have played a small part in gathering the knives that make up the iconic statue.
“The statue has now become well-known for its anti-violence symbolism, which aims to educate children, young people and adults about the harmful effects that violent behaviour has on communities.
“I believe that by keeping the issue of knife crime alive and at the forefront of society’s consciousness, we can then begin to tackle and overcome it.”
For more information visit: knifeangelhereford.co.uk