On the 12-month anniversary of what happened in Keyham (Friday, 12 August, 2022) those we lost and the survivors were remembered in a number of events across the city.At 11am an invite-only civic ceremony took place at St Andrew’s Church in Royal Parade. Guests included some of the families of the bereaved, the survivors, the first responders on the scene and a number of dignitaries. Three candles were lit to represent the past, present and future and the service included a poem written and read by Holly Peters, Plymouth’s Young Poet Laureate, a performance of Labi Siffre’s Something Inside So Strong by The Sound Council and a moving rendition of Carole King’s Way Over Yonder by Joanna Cooke.
In the evening a vigil took place for the Keyham community in North Down Crescent Park. The first candle lit was made from candles recycled from the first vigil which took place just after the tragedy. At the same time candles were lit at a gathering on the Hoe for the wider Plymouth community. As it got dark projections, taken from artwork drawn by young people in Keyham, were displayed on the side of Smeaton’s Tower. The artwork was also displayed on the Saturday and Sunday night.
Following the tragedy of 12 August, 2021 a number of memorial events were held across Plymouth. Below is a brief summary of what happened:
Messages of condolence at The Box
Those who wished to share their tributes and messages of condolence did so at a special memorial based at The Box.
During August and September, 2021 members of the public called in to create their own hearts and write their tributes using green card and stencils.
A facilitator was on hand at all times to guide and support people. The hearts were then documented before being held in the city archives. More information here.
Flowers, candles and teddy bears
Following a respectful period of time the flowers and candles left in tribute to the victims were carefully collected and preserved in archives at The Box. A number of flowers were cast in resin globes and presented to the victims’ families and the candles were recycled by a specialist company to create bespoke new candles, some of which were also presented to the families and used in the 12-month anniversary Keyham vigil and gathering at the Hoe.
Five hundred teddy bears were also left in tribute to the victims. These were steam cleaned and a large number sent to the Teddy Trust (which give soft toys to children experiencing traumatic events all over the world) while the rest were sent to a number of appropriate charities.
Messages and cards have been kept by The Box, and stored for the families. More information here.
The City was officially in mourning for the first week after the tragedy. As part of this, a candlelit vigil was held at North Down Crescent Recreation Ground (organised by Keyham Neighbourhood Community Group). Following this a series of church services and memorial masses were held across the city.
Books of condolence were available in Keyham and online for people to sign. These will be presented to the families of the victims in the future.
Across the city, people paid their respects online, in murals, and in their own communities. Below are some examples: