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5th Jul, 2022

Knife Angel brings message of hope as it comes to Worcester

Rob George 4th Mar, 2022

A MESSAGE of hope amid the horrors of knife crime will take pride of place in the heart of Worcester with the arrival of a national monument against violence and aggression.

The Knife Angel arrived in the Faithful City on Wednesday and will be in Cathedral Square until the end of March to spread its message of hope for social change as Worcester joins the list of British cities to host the breath-taking artwork.

The imposing 27ft-tall statue has been created from more than 100,000 knives and blades confiscated by 43 UK police forces. It was designed by Alfie Bradley at the British Ironwork Centre in Oswestry, with the aim of bringing the issue of knife crime to the front of society’s consciousness.

A knife amnesty will also take place, with anyone who carries a knife able to dispose of it in an amnesty box positioned next to the angel, with no questions asked and no fear of reprisals. The amnesty box will be locked and protected by 24/7 security.

The Knife Angel has been brought to the city by Worcester City Council and the West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner, with support from Ringway, acting on behalf of Worcestershire County Council.

“The Knife Angel will become the focus for a city-wide conversation about violence, aggression and knife crime while it is in Worcester,” said Coun Marc Bayliss, leader of Worcester City Council.

“It is easy to think violence is something which happens in other places, but the most commonly reported types of crimes in our city involve threats of violence without injury.

“This is an opportunity for schools, colleges and community groups to hear from people who have experienced violence first-hand and for all of us to rise to the challenge of driving violence and aggression out of our lives.”

West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner John Campion said: “The Knife Angel is iconic and continues to make an impact, particularly with the workshops and preventative work linked to its arrival.

“We are all aware of the devastating impact of knife crime and having this clear visual reminder will play another part in helping to keep our communities safe.”

Throughout the month Worcester City Council’s Community Safety and Youth Intervention Team will be on hand in Cathedral Square to raise awareness of community safety in the city along with several other organisations

Worcester Cathedral will also host a month-long programme of workshops for 22 local schools at their Undercroft Learning Centre, aimed at giving pupils a better understanding of the Knife Angel’s message.

The angel will also be the focus for a youth day on Saturday, March 19 from midday to 4pm with activities to help young people, families and passers-by engage with the issues of knife crime, violence and aggression.

Giant jenga, virtual reality, music and a live performance by local knife crime and mental health campaigner Kate Dowdeswell will be among the attractions.

A poignant memorial to remember all the lives lost to knife crime will bring the Angel’s time in Worcester to a close at 6pm on Wednesday, March 30.

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