The Knife Angel is a sculpture designed to show how bad knife crime and violence is within the UK. Standing 20 feet tall and made with 100,000 knives surrendered in the UK, it is the work of artist Alfie Bradley and took four years to create. The sculpture aims to show how bad knife crime is in the UK and also hopes to bring about the introduction of new knife amnesties.
With permission of the Home Office, surrendered knives and weapons were collected from all 43 police forces across the UK. The project also involved anti knife crime charities, action groups, ex-gang members and families that have been directly affected by knife crime.
The focal point of the sculpture is the angels wings. In order to create theses, each blade’s handle was removed to give a feather like appearance. Some of the blades are inscribed with the names of the lost loved ones of the 80 or so families who have supported the project, some with messages of disbelief at how bad knife crime is in the UK, others with messages of forgiveness and messages of regret from ex-offenders who now strive to work against knife crime.
The Knife Angel on tour
In 2019 the Knife Angel visited the City of Chester, where it stood outside of Chester Cathedral for the full month of November. Chester was the eighth city to host the Angel since its UK tour began in December 2018.
The Angel was greeted and blessed by the Bishop of Chester, Peter Foster, followed by a number of civic speeches conducted by members of the group who helped get the monument to the city. Also present were a number of families who have been affected by knife crime.
Whilst in Chester, it was hoped the Angel would act as a catalyst for educational workshops to be conducted for regional youth, focusing on the negative effects of violent and aggressive behaviour.