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Covid memorial mural ‘astonishing’, say organisers a week after unveiling

The kilometre-long wall on the Southbank has seen 130,000 hand-drawn hearts added to it since Monday last week, each representing a Covid victim.

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Volunteers add hearts to the National Covid Memorial Wall in Westminster, central London (Luciana Guerra/PA)

Volunteers add hearts to the National Covid Memorial Wall in Westminster, central London (Luciana Guerra/PA)

Volunteers add hearts to the National Covid Memorial Wall in Westminster, central London (Luciana Guerra/PA)

A piece of public artwork expressing the nation’s coronavirus grief continues to grow.

Organisers behind the heart-festooned memorial wall on London’s Southbank said they are pleased with the response to the artwork, which has seen around 130,000 hand-drawn hearts placed on a kilometre-long section of wall opposite the Houses of Parliament since Monday last week.

There was a surge of activity over the Easter bank holiday weekend, with volunteers continuing to add thousands more hearts on Tuesday, one for each person to die with Covid-19 on their death certificate during the pandemic.

The memorial is the idea of the Covid-19 Bereaved Families for Justice campaign group, which has previously called for an inquiry into the Government’s handling of the pandemic.

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A volunteer adds hearts to the National Covid Memorial Wall in Westminster, central London (Luciana Guerra/PA)

A volunteer adds hearts to the National Covid Memorial Wall in Westminster, central London (Luciana Guerra/PA)

PA

A volunteer adds hearts to the National Covid Memorial Wall in Westminster, central London (Luciana Guerra/PA)

Group co-founder Matt Fowler, 33, whose 56-year-old father Ian died with coronavirus, said: “The mood here is really good, really positive.

“So many people are either bereaved, they’ve lost a loved one, or they are otherwise moved by what they’ve seen here.

“It’s obviously very personal, but I think with the time we are in now where we are beginning to come out of lockdown, people feel it is the right time to reflect, and this really seems to resonate with people.”

Mr Fowler added: “Just the sheer scale of it is pretty astonishing – we’ve had around 130,000 hearts placed, although sadly there are more to add.”

He also praised Lambeth Council for its co-operation over the mural.

PA


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