Plans in for ‘Glade of Light’ arena memorial

Manchester City Council has lodged an application to build the memorial to those who lost their lives in the 2017 terror attack and hopes to start creating it early next year as part of the regeneration of the Medieval Quarter.

Subject to approval from the planning committee, the memorial would be located between Manchester Cathedral and Chetham’s School of Music, at the bottom of Fennel Street where it meets Victoria Street.

The ‘Glade of Light’ is intended as a permanent memorial to the victims of the 22 May 2017 terror attack at Manchester Arena. Designed by architects BCA Landscape and Smiling Wolf, in consultation with the families of those killed, it is designed to be a tranquil garden space with a planting scheme that ensures year-round colour and reflects the changing seasons.

At the heart of the memorial is a white stone ring ‘halo’, which will bear the names of the 22 people who lost their lives set in bronze, with personalised memory ‘capsules’, containing memories and mementos provided by loved ones – contained within the stone.

A public consultation on the plans for the regeneration of Manchester’s Medieval Quarter, where the memorial would sit, was held in May and June this year and garnered support from the local community, according to the council.

However, minor changes have been made to the plans in response to public feedback, including the addition of  anew outer circle path around the memorial, and more seating, to enable people to stay longer in the garden, while preserving a sense of intimacy.

“Manchester will never forget those who lost their lives on 22 May 2017 and everyone so deeply affected by the terrible events that night,” said Manchester City Council leader Sir Richard Leese.

“This memorial promises to be a beautiful tribute to them, a place for remembrance and reflection and a lasting part of the fabric of our city.”

Council chief executive Joanne Roney added: “The council made a solemn commitment that Manchester would never forget, and to ensure a special and fitting memorial to those who lost their lives. We believe the proposals in this planning application, which have been painstakingly developed, honour that promise.”

The council wants to start construction work on the memorial in early 2021 and complete the project by next autumn.





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