'Living memorials' to be created in Bulwell Forest and across Nottingham to remember Covid victims

Nottingham City Council is to create ‘living memorials’ to remember those who lost their lives to Covid-19 in Nottingham.

Friday, 18th March 2022, 8:00 am

Plans are being drawn up for a dedicated Covid Memorial Garden at Bulwell Forest to include oak trees, benches and a mural designed by a local artist.

Details are still being developed but it is hoped to have the garden ready later this year.

Additionally, 1,000 trees will be planted across the city to represent the Nottingham residents who died during the pandemic.

A special Nottingham Covid memorial service will take place at the council house next month

A Covid Memorial Tree will be dedicated at the Forest Recreation Ground – site of Covid vaccinations and testing – and Forget-me-not seeds will be given to every primary school and made available free to the public from libraries to create an annual city-wide bloom.

The council has announced the memorials as Nottingham sadly approaches 1,000 deaths from Covid-19 since the start of the pandemic.

The Forget-me-not seeds will be available from March 23 – the anniversary of the first Covid-19 lockdown in 2020.

The remembrance activities will conclude with a public memorial service on the steps of the Council House on Saturday, April 2 at 1pm, led by council leader, Coun David Mellen.

This will include speeches, readings and reflections from the last two years of the pandemic – as well as observing a minute’s silence.

Coun Mellen (Lab) said: “Covid-19 has taken an awful toll on our lives; we’ve sacrificed, followed rules and restrictions, and all done our best to stay safe from this terrible virus.

"I’m saddened that so many people have lost their lives in our city – to approach 1,000 deaths is a tragic milestone.

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“The anniversary of our first lockdown in 2020 feels like an appropriate time to look back, reflect and remember all of those people we have sadly lost to Covid in Nottingham.

“I would like to invite people to join us in our memorial activities – especially at the tree dedication at the Forest Recreation Ground and again when we gather for a memorial ceremony on the steps of the Council House.

“It is important that we do everything we can to stop this death toll from rising any higher. Covid is still present in our city and in the wider country; we must continue to take steps to live safely with the virus.

“Please continue to consider wearing a mask when you are in busy indoor spaces.

"There is still free testing available in Nottingham so if you are feeling a bit under the weather, please get a PCR test and stay at home as much as you can until you get the results.

"This will help to avoid passing on the virus.

"You can pick up LFD (rapid) tests from libraries, leisure centres and pharmacies or order kits online.

“Taking the vaccine is still the most important thing we can all do.

"It’s not too late to get vaccinated, whether it’s your first, second or booster dose.

"You can walk into the vaccination centre at the Forest Recreation Ground or book your jab online.”