The British Ironwork Centre’s “Save a Life, Surrender Your Knife” campaign revealed the bespoke knife bank, personalised for its Birmingham location, at the Hub Sports Centre in Perry Barr.
The launch event saw Birmingham’s Deputy Mayor, rap star Roach Killa, representatives of Birmingham’s community and cultural groups meet with anti-knife crime projects and families who have lost loved ones to knife crime from around the UK, with some travelling from as far afield as Manchester and Sheffield to demonstrate their support for the event.
Chief Constable Alf Hitchcock, National Lead for Knife Enabled Crime, attended together with representatives of Police Forces around the UK who will join the campaign team in extending the initiative across the United Kingdom.
The midday unveiling was carried out in poignant fashion with a number of the mothers, who have bravely offered their support to the campaign, joining together to raise the curtain before the nation’s media crews.
Following this event, the Centre’s Chairman, Clive Knowles, accompanied by the families and Roach Killa, headed into the city centre to raise further awareness and support for the campaign.
Mr Knowles said “Today marks the culmination of a great deal of hard work on behalf of all involved in the campaign, and I would like to thank personally all involved for their contribution – the families, our representatives from Police Forces nationwide, our campaign members and our celebrity supporters – none of this would have been possible without them.”
“It has been a moving day but also one that embodies a spirit of positivity, and has celebrated what might be achieved when communities, Police Forces, businesses, everyone joins together in the fight against knife crime.”
“The launch represents just the first step in our comprehensive campaign – following our meeting with the Home Office, we have received their approval and co-operation and we have pledged to provide 150 knife banks to the areas of greatest need in the UK.”
“We have also been honoured in that as a result of this event two mothers, whose families have been affected by knife crime, have today approached us to act as ambassadors for our campaign – we are delighted to have a representative in Coventry and further support in Shropshire.”
“We are appealing for assistance and support throughout the UK – if anyone has time to spare that they would like to dedicate to helping making Britain’s streets safer places for us all we invite them to contact us on 0800 975 5717.”