Starting the year off in full force, Thames Valley Police and local authorities will be joining together for a month of action to tackle violent crime in Slough.
Marked by the arrival of a ‘Knife Angel’ in the new year, the incredible 27ft sculpture will be a focal point in the local community and a reminder of the community’s stand against violence.
Made in collaboration with all UK police forces, the Home Office, anti-violence groups and affected families, the angel is aimed at bringing people together from all walks of life to take a collective stand against violence.
This includes knife crime, domestic abuse, hate crime, bullying and other forms of violence and aggression.
The sculpture will be located at Arbour Park in Slough throughout January, with numerous activities planned such as educational workshops, group activities and a candlelit vigil to remember those who have lost their lives through knife crime.
Deputy Commander for Slough policing area, Chief Inspector Ashley Smith, said: “Across Slough, the policing team have been committed to tackling violent crime, and are keenly aware of the impact these offences have on families and communities in the town.
“By welcoming the knife angel to Slough, we will, with the support of partners, be able to use this as a focal point for a month of action to take a united stand against violence.”
The angel travels to locations around the UK to educate areas about the harmful effects that violent behaviour has on communities.
It is a symbol of the nation’s intolerance to violence and aggression, made up of approximately 100,000 bladed weapons collected in knife amnesty bins during police operations across the country.
Slough Borough Council leader, Councillor James Swindlehurst, said: “I’m delighted Slough is one of the areas chosen to have the knife angel visit.
“It’s a timely visit given recent tragedies involving knife crime in the town, and the perfect opportunity to educate more people about the dangers of using and carrying knives.
Matthew Barber, Police and Crime Commissioner said: “I am pleased to be bringing the knife angel to Slough.
“Its presence will help open up those wider conversations around knife carrying and violence with the long-term aim of changing attitudes and behaviours.
“Whilst I am committed to ensuring the police take tough enforcement against those who carry knives in our community we need everyone to work together to tackle the culture of knife carrying amongst some people in Slough.”