Covid memorial wall organisers hail response to 'astonishing' artwork

6 April 2021, 16:40

Volunteers paint red hearts on the National Covid Memorial Wall in London
Volunteers paint red hearts on the National Covid Memorial Wall in London. Picture: PA

By Patrick Grafton-Green

Organisers of a hand-painted memorial to loved ones who have died with coronavirus have hailed the response to the "astonishing" artwork.

Around 130,000 hearts have been painted on a kilometre-long section of wall opposite the Houses of Parliament on London's Southbank since last Monday.

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.

READ MORE: 'This has really helped me': Volunteers paint 150,000 hearts for each life lost to Covid-19

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.

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

A woman views the wall, which pays tribute to all those who have lost their lives to coronavirus
A woman views the wall, which pays tribute to all those who have lost their lives to coronavirus. Picture: PA

"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.