Just after Easter we were in central London for an appointment, so took the opportunity to visit the National Covid Memorial Wall by the Thames opposite the Houses of Parliament.
In little over a week, the Memorial Wall has grown dramatically displaying small red hearts drawn in memory of loved ones lost during the pandemic along a two-metre-high wall between Westminster Bridge and Lambeth Bridge. It’s a very moving experience walking along this kilometre-long stretch of the river, with short messages and personal details standing out in the sea of red. Organisers expect to have reached 150,000 hearts and, so far, the result is spectacular.
Occasionally, there are tables with volunteers overseeing things, either offering red pens to bereaved families or drawing hearts on their behalf. Flowers and lanterns also punctuate the length of it and must look beautiful after dark. The scale of it is breath-taking – and shocking. Wall plaques give the Memorial and official tone, yet it is the hand-drawn hearts and sense of spontaneity that give it an authentic deep-felt, raw emotion.
The project is being funded by donations to help cover materials and signage and you can see details of the crowdfunding campaign here.