Chesterfield is the latest town to be chosen as one of the locations across the country hosting the National Monument Against Violence and Aggression.
The visit follows the monument’s other visit to the county in October 2019, when more than 200,000 people came to see the structure outside Derby Cathedral
Known as the ‘Knife Angel’, the spectacular 27ft sculpture, made from up to 100,000 bladed weapons collected in knife banks during police amnesties across the country, will be based next to the Church of St Mary and All Saints on Church Way in the town, from Monday, 4 October.
Created in collaboration with all 43 police forces, the Home Office, Anti-violence groups and hundreds of families who have been affected by knife crime, the monument is a symbol of the nation’s intolerance to violence and aggression.
It was created by the British Ironwork Centre, by sculptor Alfie Bradley to highlight the impact knife crime has on people, families and communities.
Derbyshire Police and Crime Commissioner Angelique Foster said: “The Knife Angel is a powerful statement on the struggle to curb knife crime and prevent more families from suffering senseless pain and loss.
“A number of partner organisations worked together to make the sculpture’s first visit to Derby possible and we are proud to see the Knife Angel back to the county, this time in Chesterfield.
“The Knife Angel vividly reminds us not only of the devastating consequences of violence but also our collective responsibility to take action and change the future for the next generation. I hope that the Knife Angel presence in Chesterfield provides educational value for many families and youth organisations by helping to initiate difficult conversations about violence and knife crime and questioning the tragic loss of so many lives.”
Councillor Jill Mannion-Brunt, Chesterfield Borough Council’s cabinet member for health and wellbeing, said: “I’m really pleased that through the Community Safety Partnership we can support the visit of the Knife Angel to Chesterfield.
“It not only serves as a poignant memorial to reflect on and commemorate lives lost through violence across the UK, it will also serve to engage people and help educate them to ensure that knife crime does not become an issue locally. There will also be a series of engaging sessions for young people including community theatre that aims to further strengthen this message.”
Chief Superintendent, Hayley Barnett, who is in charge of policing in the north of Derbyshire, said “We are very happy to be supporting the visit of the Knife Angel to Chesterfield.
“The visit of the structure to Derby two years-ago was a success, in that it gave people the opportunity to reflect on the implications that violent crime has on the victims, families and in-fact all those affected by knife crime in-particular.
“We had lots of feedback asking to try and bring the powerful monument back to the north of the county and so we are pleased that Chesterfield has been chosen as the latest location.
“Our work to prevent violent crime, particularly those crimes involving weapons such as knives continues through the year with intelligence-led operations and supporting the education of young people in-particular in the dangers of carrying a knife.”
In support of the visit we will be holding and backing a number of events including: a ‘drop the knife’ performance held at Spring Well High School by the Salt Mine production company, several public engagement sessions at the Knife Angel and a knife disposal bin will be at the monument on a Monday-Wednesday-Friday between 11am and 2pm.
For more details of these related events, follow the local Safer Neighbourhood policing team on Facebook and Twitter.