A monument made up of seized knives and blades has been unveiled outside police headquarters to honour police dogs.
The statue, which stands outside the West Mercia Police headquarters in Hindlip, was also created using decommissioned guns and recognises the ‘loyalty and service’ of the force’s canines.
Created free of charge by sculptors at the British Ironworks Centre in Oswestry, the sculpture makes use of weapons left over from the creation of the Knife Angel – a 26-foot high statue that pays tribute to victims of knife crime.
As reported by the BBC, police said the sculpture was ‘an incredible reminder of the hard work, dedication and bravery of the dogs’.
As well as containing leftover materials from the Knife Angel, the monument is also made up of whistles, canine ID tags and parts of dog bowls.
The unveiling was attended by many in the police force, as well as police dogs and their handlers such as retired police dog Bacca and former handler Mike Davey.
Bacca suffered stab wounds earlier this year when he defended Mr Davey from an armed assailant, earning a top bravery award for his actions in July.
Although a national police dog memorial was unveiled in Essex in April, the make-up of this particular statue makes it unique, according to the British Ironwork Centre. The chairman of the centre, Clive Knowles, said: ‘It will be the first one that’s ever been created using weapons and blades’.
He told UNILAD:
We felt this project was a natural fit for us to support West Mercia Police and to use some of the knives left over from building the Knife Angel.
We are always keen to support West Mercia Police, as they were the first constabulary that helped us with our National Anti-Violence Campaign.
The Knife Angel, which was also made by the British Ironwork Centre, was created from more than 100,000 surrendered knives and weapons collected by all 43 police forces across the UK.
Since its creation in 2016, the sculpture – also known as the National Monument Against Violence and Aggression – has travelled around the country to ‘bring to light just how bad knife crime and violence is within the UK and how something needs to change before it’s too late’.
By doing so, the centre hopes it will be able to voice the concerns of the country, its communities, families, and the victims that have been affected by knife crime.
Along with the monument, the British Ironwork Centre has launched the Save a Life, Surrender Your Knife campaign in the hope that a spotlight can be shone on the ever-increasing problem of knife crime.
You can sign the petition to support this campaign here.
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A Broadcast Journalism Masters graduate who went on to achieve an NCTJ level 3 Diploma in Journalism, Lucy has done stints at ITV, BBC Inside Out and Key 103. While working as a journalist for UNILAD, Lucy has reported on breaking news stories while also writing features about mental health, cervical screening awareness, and Little Mix (who she is unapologetically obsessed with).