Murder Suspects & Victims – #BlackLivesMatter

I do love a good set of numbers.  You can prove whatever you want with numbers, but, by themselves, they don’t really lie, it’s what you do with them that forms opinion.  Believe me, opinion is truly divided on this one and I’m ready for the abuse and condemnation that will no doubt come my way, my ‘Block’ button is fully serviced and ready for action.

Way back in 2018 Sky News published a rather informative article on the subject, and if it didn’t take so long, I would happily do some work to update it, but as FOI responses, even in normal times, can take anything up to 18 months to come back (yes I’ve had a couple take that long) that will have to wait for a future update.

It has widely been reported for a long time that the black population are disproportionately the victims of murder on the streets of our country, London gets a really bad press for this.  What is not shouted quite so loudly is the ethnicity of Murder Suspects.  Maybe there’s no political mileage in that.  Personally I do, and always have, preferred the reality, be it good, bad or indifferent.

Sky News submitted FOI requests to every Police Force in the England, Scotland and Wales requesting some stats on their murder victims and suspects.

Apparently, back in 2018 London was 60% White, yet only 35% of Murder Victims were white and 24% of Murder Suspects.  However the figures for the country as a whole suggest that maybe London is not completely representative, and maybe that’s not actually a surprise.  In the rest of the country white folk made up 86% of the population, 89% of Murder Victims and 81% of Murder Suspects, suspects and victims being very much in line with the population as a whole.

I’m completely happy to acknowledge that Sky News is my source for the data in the following charts, however, as it was obtained under the Freedom of Information Act it is, by default, in the Public Domain.

When it comes to ages of those concerned, it really does look like London has a problem emerging (has emerged?).  18% of the population of London is under 21, but 32% of the Murder Victims (all races) were under 21 and 45% of Murder Suspects. It looks to me as though the youth of London have running rampant. Yes, I acknowlege that this data is 18 months old, but personally my impression is that the situation has not improved, but I will try and get updated info.

Unsurprisingly possibly, males accounted for 81% of the Murder Victims in London, and 94% of those accused, and yet again the largest group was Black Males.

Other figures for areas of the UK possibly more closely represent the population as a whole.  In the rest of the UK Males comprised 49% of the population, 69% of the victims and 92% of those accused.

So there we have it, or at least how it was in 2018.  I’ll do my very best to obtain up to date and current info, and publish a new post to update this one.  The activists are quite right, Black Lives do Matter, I believe it’s unpopular to say it but All Lives Matter, but London seems to be completely out of step with the rest of the country.  I fully accept that Black Lives Matter everywhere, but it seems to be an inescapable fact that in London Black Lives are mainly being taken by Black People.  Is it racist to say that?  I don’t think so. It’s my interpretation of the figures.  I will make it a priority to obtain up to date info for London at least, the rest of the country seems pretty well balanced.  Not only do I not think it’s racist to  point it out, I also think that ALL agencies on both all sides of the argument need to sit down and thrash this out once and for all, and that includes the Mayor of London, whoever he is.  This CANNOT be simply nothing more than a tool to bash the Police and other agencies with.  Young Black Males are dying, killed, mainly, by young black men (or at least that’s what the figures say to me) but no doubt there is an Academic somewhere out there who will point out where I have gone wrong.  I have said it many times before, I don’t care what colour the victims or suspects are the killing SIMPLY HAS TO STOP.  No more dancing around trying to score points. STOP THE KILLING.

Finally, thank you to my good friend @obbsie for the following two montages of some of the murder victims in London over the last few years.  he did send me a third one representing last year but as it contains names and other personal details I have elected not to use that one.

It’s A War Zone Out There

Well, it is war really.

I make absolutely no apology for starting off with a stark image

This is one of the more acceptable images from Camberwell recently where Police and Paramedics encountered a scene of absolute carnage after 4 young men had been stabbed in the street, one of them DISEMBOWELLED.  Nobody, I repeat, NOBODY, deserves that in a so-called civilised country.  I don’t care if you are black, white, Asian, Oriental, gay, straight, trans or whatever, this level of violence has no place on our streets, in our society.

Who do I blame?  That is a complex question with many answers.

I blame the parents, when I grew up my father would have absolutely battered me if I had got involved in some of the crimes we are witnessing today.

I blame the youths themselves.  Presumably they know right from wrong, and in nobody’s book can this be right.

First and foremost I blame OUR GOVERNMENT.  Yes, that is predictable, but I do.  Since the Tories/Coalition came into power in 2010 local Council budgets have been slashed so that Youth Services such as Youth Clus etc are no longer affordable, prioritised out of the budget.  Nothing for ther kids to do.

Police Forces across the land have had to withdraw/disband Juvenile Bureaux.  Once again, prioritised out of the budgets.  So have been Schools Involvement Officers who used to be invited (Yes, I did say INVITED) into schools to talk to kids, mainly young teenagers in Secondary School, about a variety of topics, but this would certainly have been the main priority if it still happened.  Not Front Line enough.

Since 2014 Police Forces across the land have been bullied into cutting back dreadfully on Stop and Search.  Where has that got us eh?  Terrible, horrific scenes like those above is where that has got us.

If you’ve had your Cornflakes and are feeling strong enough take a look at this video shot from above by a Camberwell resident last week.  It shows many things.

  • It shows the compassion and professionalism displayed by Police Officers and Paramedics as they battled to save the lives of the victims.
  • It shows some of the weapons involved scattered on the floor around them
  • It shows (I believe) those Police Officers and Paramedics being attacked or harrassed by young men/youths whilst they were still administering First Aid.
  • You can hear the voice of the person filming, clearly shocked by the scenes below, clearly supporting the actions of the Police and Paramedics and clearly condemning the actions of the thugs.

The government have been directly responsible for the loss of 21,000+ Police Officers from our streets since 2010.  No, they can’t protect everybody, can’t be everywhere all the time but more officers would certainly help. Apart from anything else the criminals KNOW about the cuts and the reducued likelihood of being caught.  They KNOW that Theresa May, as Home Secretary, ordered the reduction in Stop and Search.  They KNOW that Police Officers are over-stretched, burnt out. They’re not daft they also monitor Social Media.

With 21,000 fewer officers and an enforced restriction on Stop and Search the criminals become enboldened.  They know that the odds of getting caught carrying a knife/machete/sword through the streets are greatly reduced.  Combine that with the increased workloads of the Police and there you have it, the Perfect Storm for Extreme Knife Crime.  Every knife, machete or sword that has been used in this multitude of attacks has been carried through the streeets at some point.  Think about that.  Maybe the person sat next to you on the Tube while yu’re reading this?

I do hope you’ll forgive me but I feel so strongly about this that I will crave your indulgence on a couple of issues.

Firstly I’ll repeat a few diagrams that show exactly where the government cuts have left us.

Secondly, something I don’t do very often, but if you only do one thing with this blog I emplore you to forward it to your local paper, the national media, your local MP, or your local Councillors.  Anybody who can help spread the word.  It’s not about the numbers, I don’t care how many ‘hits’ I get on this post, it’s about saving lives, nothing more.

This level of violence in Britain is simply unacceptable and sadly Theresa May is responsible for an awful lot of it with her reckless policies as Home Secretaries and refusal to sanction anything now as Prime Minister.

Police Officers do not want these kids to die, or be maimed, on our streets.  They do not want to witness the aftermath of such savagery.  Their families do not want to be worried about their safety, and neither do the families of the victims.  Lives blighted, and for what?  A few pounds worth of drugs, a bit of ‘dissing’ or simply coming from the wrong Post Code.

The Police Force CAN deal with these problems, but not with one, or both, hands tied behind their backs.  They have the necessary skils and willpower to deal with these problems, yes they do.  However they currently have neither the freedom nor the resources to do it.

  1. Unshackle them from the crazy restrictions on Stop and Search.  Unless I’ve missed it nobody has ever been killed by Stop and Search.  It is vital in today’s society, not just in London.  I have always said that Stop and Search should be conducted with dignity and lawfully.  Make sure the grounds are there and conduct it in a polite, civilised manner.  What is there to object to there?  No section of community can object to that surely?
  2. IMMEDIATELY reverse the crazy, reckless cuts brought about by May and Cameron.  They will take years to get us back to where we should but the sooner we start the better.
  3. Whilst I am not a huge fan of Mutual Aid for such matters (it should be reserved for unforesen emergencies normally) but let the National Police Chiefs Council co-ordinate a series of properly, carefully planned proactive operations around the identifed hotspots in the country and hit them with a civilian ‘Shock and Awe’ campaign.  Let them know who is the boss on our streets and it ain’t the knife-carrying thugs.

There will no doubt be comparisons to Operation Swamp, but if NPCC earn their corn and do it properly, involving Community Leaders at an early stage,  the arguments should be self-evident.  Do we really want to wake up every morning hearing about another knife attack or shooting on the streets of our country?  Do we really have to emulate Trump’s America? Can we really defend doing NOTHING? What exactly has Theresa May DONE about this issue?  NOTHING. Too wrapped in her pathetic Brexit campaign to bother about an emergency much closer to home.

Please share the **** out of this post to all and sundry who might be able to bring pressure on the Cruella, and finally, enjoy your Bank Holiday Weekend, and if you are on duty at the Notting Hill Carnival, best wishes and stay safe.

Who Gives A Toss About #KnifeCrime?

Well, I do, but I’m not sure that our politicians really do care.

It will come as no surprise to most of you that I care about it, and my chosen vehicle for heightening awareness is the Knife Angel. I ‘dug’ into it, found out what it was all about, went to see it (stunning) and met the ‘owner’ and creator of the Knife Angel. I spoke to both of them at length over many cups of coffee, and their passion and belief in the project is absolutely blindingly clear.

Clive Knowles, the ‘owner’ has invested thousands (probably 10s of thousands, I was too polite to ask him) of pounds in creating the Angel. He has fabricated secure Knife Bins, more than enough for each Force to conduct a Knife Amnesty and securely store the knives surrendered. He has footed the bill for delivering the Knife Banks and collecting them when full and transportation back to his business premises.

Nobody can say that Clive is not fully committed to tackling the epidemic of Knife Crime across the country. Once the Angel was made he started a campaign to get the Knife Angel installed on the 4th Plinth of Trafalgar Square. He has even named the Knife Angel the National Monument Against Violence And Aggression.

Clive Knowles is the gent on the right.

I have also spent some time with Alfie Bradley, the brilliant young sculptor who created the Knife Angel. In order to do this he had to take 100,000 knives, and other bladed instruments, blunt each and every one of them and then form them into the Knife Angel. Some of the blades even have personal messages engraved on them from victims of Knife Crime or their families. His passion and commitment are blindingly apparent, but he is possibly better known for making a huge gorilla out of spoons for Uri Geller, but that’s another story.

Alfie is the chap on the ladder.

Then we come to our politicians. At various times, in an assortment of ways, the following politicians have proclaimed their abhorrence of the current flood of Knife Crimes and their desire to do something about it.

Theresa May

Amber Rudd

Sajid Javid

Louise Haigh

Jeremy Corbyn

Holly Lynch

Nick Hurd

Sadiq Khan.

There may be others that I have overlooked, if that is the case please forgive me.

I have tweeted to Theresa May and Amber Rudd, and emailed both of them personally. No response from either except for an ‘Out of Office’ response from Amber Rudd that if I was not a constituent of hers I would not get a reply, and I didn’t.

Sajid Javid has only recently joined the Home Office but he has still failed to respond in any way to tweets to him about Knife Crime and the #KnifeAngel.

Louise Haigh, Holly Lynch and Jeremy Corbyn have not once responded in any way to numerous tweets addressed to them on the matter.

Nick Hurd has failed to respond to tweets or emails.

Finally, the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan. I have tweeted him dozens of times, to both his official and personal accounts. I have sent him emails. No reply to anything. Sadiq Khan is also responsible for deciding what exactly is shown on top of the 4th Plinth in Trafalgar Square. I have emailed the 4th Plinth Commissioning Group. No reply, but I have seen a photo of Sadiq Khan posing in front of the latest piece of art atop the 4th Plinth.

A big ‘Thumbs Up’. London is in the grip of an immense wave of Knife Crime and a ‘Thumbs Up’ is more appropriate than the Knife Angel.

I also emailed the Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, Cressida Dick, but all I got back from them was a bland rejection by ‘James’ her Staff Officer, whoever ‘James’ may be.

So, sadly, the answer seems to be that I give a toss, Clive Knowles and Alfie Bradley give a toss. Not one of the above-mentioned politicians has demonstrated any positive action towards the Knife Angel campaign. However, I do believe that Sadiq Khan has contacted Clive Knowles direct and informed him why the Knife Angel is not a suitable exhibit for the 4th plinth. In my opinion he offered a pathetic, jobsworth, reason, but that is entirely his affair, I have the right to reject it.

If the politicians want to convince us that they do actually give a toss then it’s time for them to adopt more than snappy soundbites. Get behind the Knife Angel. If not Trafalgar Square then suggest somewhere else that’s suitable. Make it happen. This is not about me. It isn’t even about Clive and Alfie. It’s about the thousands of people being stabbed and murdered on our streets every year, and Clive’s campaign to draw attention to it, and begin a reduction in Knife Crime. Don’t support me, #SupportTheKnifeAngel. Especially if you want people to vote for you next time round, whichever party you are. This is not about politics, it’s about young people dying on our streets.

PLEASE take the time to watch all three videos below, particularly the second one.  The Knife Angel suddenly becomes very real.

SAVE A LIFE – Surrender Your Knife

Stop & Search – A (Not An) Academic’s Opinion

I am not an academic, never been one and hardly likely to become one now. I have, however, considerable experience in Research and Analysis. In the past few days I have been involved in a, sometimes, acrimonious exchange on Twitter with an ex Think Tank academic, on the thorny subject of Stop and Search.

It all started off when I received this Tweet

and then

Rightly or wrongly I just had to challenge them

Gavin then confirmed his assertions with

This exchange continued backwards and forwards over 2 or 3 days, with neither of us conceding that the other might be right. Gavin came up with an extract from some unidentified document that he had found.

Cheekily followed up with

A further refusal to concede that “we expect…..” may just have a different meaning. The mood of this ‘instruction’ is possibly revealed here

In the midst of it all I asked Gavin if he had ever spent a week with a Front Line Response Team, his response was

The argument continued backwards and forwards for a couple of days, I won’t bore you you with the actual tweets they are on our timelines if you want them. At some point it included “numbers versus percentages”. Academics love things in percentages, I prefer numbers. A good example of this is Stop and Search in the Met. The number of people stopped and searched has dropped off a cliff face. The percentage of those arrested has increased dramatically. Some Academics claim that as a success. The reality is that a larger percentage of a much smaller number means that about 15,000 fewer people are being arrested in the Met as a result of Stop and Search. Not exactly a huge success.

In an attempt to get a more balanced opinion than my own I posed the subject of the 20% Arrest Rate to 2 Facebook Groups for the Metropolitan Police. Most of the replies I received denied that there was such a policy, a small number remembered the policy but claimed that it was ignored as unethical, some claimed that it was misinterpreted and only ever implemented by a small number of Inspectors at Appraisal time. There was one response however that was quite illuminating and I brought it to Gavin’s attention (anonymised obviously)

Gavin’s response?

My final words

I have nothing against Gavin as a person, I have never met him, but in this particular exchange he seems to have formed an opinion regarding Stop and Search in the Met and was particularly unreceptive to any differing view. This is not intended as an anti-Gavin post, just expressing a different interpretation of the same document.

However, not all Academics are so insistent that Stop/Search is bad. I have always taken the view that Stop and Search conducted lawfully is a valuable tool and legitimate tactic in the war against Street Crime. Police Officers are fully aware of the requirements for lawfully conducting a Stop/Search under s1 of PACE, and attempting to fulfil an SMT-defined quota is not one of them. I wonder if all Academics are familiar with them.

Finally, I was reminded of the work of another Academic, Dr Marian FitzGerald, basically her recommendations and conclusions can be summed up thus:

Contribution of saearches [sic] to tackling crime:

▪ Searches contribute to the detection and prevention of crime through arrests, and through the intelligence they produce.

▪ The arrest rates tend to be higher for ‘low discretion’ searches, where officers have received information from a third party.

▪ The report claimed that the power has a general impact on crime prevention, demonstrated by independent statistical analysis. However, this important finding was disputed by the independent analyst contracted to carry out the investigation.

Patterns of searches:

▪ Officers target certain individuals who they perceive to be involved in crime locally.

▪ Officers may use the power of stop and search to disrupt groups of young people.

▪ The use of the power is still perceived as a measure of productivity although searches have not been used as a Performance Indicator since 1997.

▪ Most searches were carried out on young men, around half of which did not live in the local area.

Dr FitzGerald’s research was conducted quite some time ago, and is specific to London, but that in itself does not necessarily render it invalid. The two main factors that have changed since then are;

a) Crime Levels have increased

b) Police numbers have increased since the date of the report but are steadily reducing again.

In conclusion it appears that Academics do not all agree with each other, and some are not willing to listen to opposing views to their own, even when presented with supporting ‘evidence’. However I am still perfectly happy to support Stop and Search as a valid tactic, with the strict proviso that it is conducted lawfully. With the recent explosion of knife-related assaults and murders, robberies etc, it has to be remembered that every one of those knives is carried through the streets at some point. How else do we deter this epidemic without Stop and Search? It’s a serious question, I’m open to all suggestions, I just want the killings to end.

Any item of Academia that appears on my Timeline that reduces the opportunities to prevent the killings is not best received.

ADDENDUM

Whilst I was writing this the following response popped up in one of the Facebook Groups;

Considering S.1 PACE refers to reasonable suspicion I’m surprised that the arrest ratio to “lawful stops” is not higher. How can any organization legislate a specific quota of arrests to stops? So they don’t. In fact with all of the adverse criticism over the years stop and search has been reduced to a trickle……………

A Heartfelt Plea – Please Read, Share, Whatever

Ladies and Gentlemen, unaccustomed as I am to grovelling, please bear with me just this once.  You may, or may not, know that I have taken a keen interest in the Knife Angel project (or National Monument Against Violence And Aggression) Briefly, this is a 25 foot statue of an Angel made from knives supplied from Knife Amnesty bins across the UK.  To date, about 100,000 knives have been supplied and incorporated into the Angel.  If you are unaware you can find out the basics of the Knife Angel project here, or just Google “Knife Angel”,  She even has her own Facebook Page here

I have been fortunate enough to have been invited to meet the Chairman, Managing Director and the sculptor who created the Angel.  Their passion is immediately evident.  The Angel is HUGE and a very powerful piece of work.  It will be finished next year and their ultimate ambition is to get it displayed on the 4th Plinth in Trafalgar Square, an aim I whole-heartedly agree with, and so, apparently do thousands of others who have signed an online petition.  I think it would send a wonderful message to the public about knife crime.  Some of the individual blades are engraved with messages from the families of knife crime victims.


If you agree, I would ask you to do three, not very onerous, things to help the ‘Angel team’;

1). Please sign and share the petition  supporting the Angel going on to the 4th plinth.

http://surrenderyourknife.co.uk/support/government-petition-to-see-capital-exposure/

2). Please consider writing to your MP asking him/her to support the proposal

3). Please write to the Mayor of London suggesting and supporting this powerful work of art to sit atop the 4th Plinth in Trafalgar Square.

If you, your family, or anyone else you know has been the victim of Knife Crime it is not too late to get a message engraved upon a blade, just contact the British Ironworks Centre for more info.

Finally, please feel free to share this plea anywhere on SM you might wish to.

I thank you, as do the creators.

angel

The Knife Angel

Is it just me, or has there been an absolute explosion of knife crime, particularly in London, over the past 18 months?

Our best response to the problem?  Cut back on Stop and Search.  Theresa May started it, Amber Rudd has dutifully continued it.  Apparently we should not be doing so much Stop and Search.  I really don’t get that, as EVERY SINGLE KNIFE used to stab, slash, kill or injure somebody else has almost invariably been carried through the streets by somebody, somewhere at some time.

Am I alone in thinking that we should make the streets too hot to carry knives? Better detection, more prosecutions, fewer Cautions and better sentencing.

The Police can, and hopefully will, do their bit, but how can we highlight the problem? How do we get the message across to the public that knife crime is at an unacceptable and unsustainable level?

Enter Alfie.  “Who the devil is Alfie?” I hear you ask.

Alfie is Alfie Bradley, an innovative sculptor from Shropshire, possibly better known for making a gorilla out of spoons.  He is currently making an Angel out of knives.  Where does he get all the knives from?  From Police Amnesty Boxes mainly plus donations of ‘family cutlery’ from the Public.

What is the purpose of the Knife Angel? It is a National Monument Against Violence And Aggression.

How can we find out more about the Knife Angel?  Several ways really, you can read about it at it’s Facebook Page here;

You can simply Google “Knife Angel” and see pictures of it and read any one of the many news items concerning it.  You can even read more about Alfie.

How can you help raise the profile of the Knife Angel?  There is a campaign to get the Knife Angel displayed on the 4th plinth in Trafalgar Square. You can sign a petition for this purpose here.

You can write to the Mayor of London and/or your local MP explaining why you think this is such an important project.

If you have had your life blighted by Knife Crime Alfie has told me that you can leave a message on the Facebook page (as above) and your message can be engraved onto the Angel.   Ot only does this send a powerful message it can go a huge way to help the families of Knife Crime victims come to terms with their loss and feel that they are contributing to something useful to turn back the tide of Knife Crime.

I am hoping to have a chat with Alfie over a cup of coffee in the next couple of weeks to see what we, the Twitterati, can do to raise the Angel’s profile and help lift it onto the 4th plinth. There is no doubt in my mind that pride of place in Trafalgar Square for a few weeks will aid the Save A Life, Surrender Your Knife campaign.

If you have any other suggestions how this can be helped by all means leave them for me in the comments below and I will discuss them with Alfie when I see him.

Please, this explosion of Knife Crime just has to STOP and anything we can do can only hasten that process and help safeguard our youth.

Knife Crime In London – The Update

As promised I obtained the stats from the Metropolitan Police about the slightly older Afro Caribbean population together with those for the Asian population.

In addition to the 166 young, black males that were affected by knife crime in my original post it is now apparent that many more between the ages of 20 and 50 have also been affected.  A further 3 fatalities in the first 3 months of this year accompanied by 160 injured by knives, makingh a total of 5 fatalities and 324 injured between the ages of 10 and 50.

IC3 20-50

 

Worryingly, the number of white males between 20 and 50 is even higher, 3 fatalities and 172 injured.  Under the age of 20 there were significantly less, but over 20 that is no longer so.

The Asian community fares slightly better, between the ages of 10 and 50 there were 2 male fatalities and ‘only’ 91 injured.

IC4 10-50

In total, the figures tell a terrible story, between the ages of 10 and 50 the male population of London has seen 12 fatalities and 632 injuries in just the first 3 months of this year.  I know that London is a big, bad place, but these figures will be added to elsewhere in the UK.

Our youngsters are dying, or being injured, due to other people possessing, and using, knives.

It is time that it was stopped.

The PCC elections are now over, ALL PCCs should be making Knife Crime a priority before it is too late for even more of our youths.

 

 

 

 

London Knife Crime – The Facts

I don’t know about you but I was getting quite depressed hearing all the stories in the media about stabbings in Greater London, so I asked the Met two simple questions, which they answered (that was a surprise);

1. How many black males under the age of 20 have been killed or injured by knife crime in the first 3 months of 2016?

2. How many white males under the age of 20 have been killed or injured by knife crime in the first 3 months of 2016?

The Met cheekily granted themselves a small extension, but to be fair they did supply with some data, which is easy to digest.

The answer to question 1 was 2 fatalities and 113 injuries, of which 77 were Moderate to Serious.

The answer to qurestion 2 was 0 fatalities and 51 injuries of which 28 were Moderate to Serious.

Knife Crime 1

 

 

 

 

 

 

They then went further than I had asked them to and broke the figures down even more for me, apologies for the corruption in the image, that wass how I was sent it.

Knife Crime 2

It is reasonably self-evident where the problem lies, what can’t speak can’t fudge.

What does scream loudly from the page is that in the first 3 months of this year 166 young people were injured by Knife Crime in London.

166 young lives affected in some way by knives and violence.

2 young people never went home.

I know that London isn’t mirrored everywhere in the UK but surely it is indicative of just what is hapopening on our streets?

How do we tackle Knife Crime?  How can we reduce these awful figures?

 

  1.  EDUCATION – teach the young of the dangers of carrying knives, what they can do, what knioves can do to them.
  2.  Stop and Search – most, if not all, knives are carried through the streets at some point, and most, if not all, of the above offences were committed in the street.
  3. I can’t actually think of a #3, perhaps you could fill me in.

 

 

Carrying A Knife? Do Something Good With It, Help Make An Angel

Something totally different from me today.

I recently got to know the British Ironworks Centre at Oswestry. They do lots of good work for many different charities.  I sometimes think that they do more charitable work than paid commissions.

Spoon Gorilla
Spoon Gorilla

They came to notice recently when one of their employees, Alfie Bradley, made a huge gorilla, 12-13 feet tall, commissioned by Uri Geller, and it was made entirely from 40,000 spoons.

The latest project for British Ironworks, and Alfie, is to make an Angel out of knives, and in order to do this they are taking the knives collected by Police Force Amnesties across the country (I’m not certain if it’s every Force).  In order to facilitate this they are providing Forces with free Knife Bins, for any Force that wants them.

 

 

The centre said that this project would not just be art, but could save lives.

Clive Knowles, Managing Director of the British Ironworks Centre, said: “We want to do an enormous angel that would represent love and hope and people that are lost.”

He said the team were going to launch their Save a life, Surrender a Knife appeal and admitted finding a large number of weapons would be the biggest challenge.

Alfie and Some of His Knives
Alfie and Some of His Knives

He added that it could help to “re-energise” a number of knife surrenders and amnesties organised by police forces across the country.

The finished product will be about 20 feet high and it is hoped that it will be unveiled on the ‘4th plinth’ at Trafalgar Square some time next year.

 

Greater Manchester Police are one of many Forces signed up for the scheme and using the British Ironworks Knife Bins. GMP Bin

I can but urge anybody who carries a knife, Parents, any Youth Leaders, Probation Officers, Teachers etc etc to get behind this scheme and help make a national statue that will pay tribute to those who have died through knife crime.  If this scheme does indeed Save Lives, then it will have been a very worthwhile project.