Fundraising for the National Trans Memorial after damage

There is sadness and also anger at the way the Sackville Gardens memorial was treated by revelers.

A fundraising campaign is underway to replace the National Trans Memorial in the city center after being badly damaged over the Manchester Pride weekend.

The Sackville Gardens sculpture cannot be repaired after catching fire in the recent event.

Claire Green, acting on behalf of the National Transgender Charity sparkledhas now set up a fundraising page to get the ball rolling for a replacement and over £1,500 has been donated in the first few days.

However, among the sadness over the vandalism there is also anger over the way the memorial was treated, with Sparkle and the community coming up against Pride of Manchester on the question of who bears responsibility and takes responsibility for what happened.

Damage to the National Trans Memorial in Sackville Gardens

Why was the fundraiser set up?

The GoFundMe page was put in place after the Sackville Gardens memorial suffered irreparable damage over the Manchester Pride weekend. It is hoped that enough money can be raised to replace it with something sturdier.

The memorial, which was erected in 2013 and was the first of its kind in the country, is carved in the shape of a butterfly and also contains plaques commemorating people from the trans community whose families did not follow their wishes when they died. and buried them with their dead or who were killed.

It is one of three memorials in Sackville Gardens, the others being the Glimmer of hope in remembrance of those who have suffered from HIV and AIDS and the statue of Alan Turing.

The fundraiser was set up by Claire Green who wants the design of a new memorial to be developed in consultation with the community.

Claire said: “I wanted to start while the iron was hot. People get in touch to do different fundraising things.

Clear Green

“The community is gutted and they’re also angry that this was allowed to happen.

“I hope that the phoenix will rise from these ashes and that we will get a stronger and more solid memorial.

“I’m still upset about this, but I hope good comes out of this and the people of Manchester come together as they have countless times before.

“The trans community is left, right and center and the level of compassion towards our community is decreasing, but we need to stay positive. It’s nice to see the support coming from all over and we need to work towards a beautiful memorial that we can all enjoy.

Unfortunately, this is not the first time the memorial has been vandalized. It suffered damage a few weeks after it was put in place and Claire says this is the third year in a row that damage has been done to it during Pride.

What has been said of the damage caused to the memorial?

A disagreement arose between Sparkle and the trans community and Manchester Pride following the destruction of the memorial during the festival.

It has been suggested that Manchester Pride should have put in place better security arrangements to protect the memorial and question marks were also put over fire extinguishers in Sackville Gardens.

Additionally, Claire said she wanted to raise the issue of better lighting the area with Manchester City Council for the design and installation of the new memorial.

The Sackville Gardens Memorial

Sparkle President Vicki Mulligan said: “While I share everyone’s anger and distress at the ignorance and indifference shown towards a powerful symbol of my community’s struggle, I am equally determined to point out the neglect that resulted in the costly dismantling and replacement of the memorial.

“The charity will work closely with Manchester City Council to establish liability for damage and to preserve the legacy and impact of the memorial.”

Annie Wallace, an actress known for her role in the Channel 4 soap opera Hollyoaks and patron of Sparkle, said: “The National Trans Memorial in Sackville Gardens is the focal point of Transgender Remembrance Day each November.

“His loss will be keenly felt this year, especially as the trans community is currently being demonized and targeted like never before.

“The damage and desecration of this monument could have been avoided if a basic level of respect for a memorial had been shown.

“I hope a replacement can be found soon and enjoy the same level of respect and status as the nearby Beacon of Hope, which means so much to Manchester’s LGBTQIA+ community.”

What have Manchester Pride and the council said?

In a statement on the Manchester Pride website its Inclusivity Development Manager, Dr Christopher Owen, said: “Everyone at Manchester Pride is devastated by the damage to the National Trans Memorial, during the Manchester Pride Festival.

“We are sorry this happened on our watch and are in conversation with Sparkle to ensure a new resilient memorial is in place.

“Although the fire was an accident and the council removed the National Trans Memorial from the garden strictly for safety reasons, it still hurts a lot to see it go.

“Our community is under attack in this country, hate crimes are on a terrifying increase, and trans and non-binary legal and political futures are precarious at best. We don’t need that now. We need peace. We need hope. And at this time especially, we need action.

Damage to the National Trans Memorial in Sackville Gardens

“The trans community is an integral part of everything Manchester Pride stands for and we hope to play our part in ensuring that we have a lasting legacy honoring our trans family and friends who have been lost.”

The statement also reported on how Manchester Pride responded to the fire on Sunday August 28, the inquest which initially concluded it was an accident but is still investigating the incident and how it modifies its risk management plans.

However, the statement was heavily criticized on Twitter by Sparkle vice-chairman Lee Clatworthy, who said there were inconsistencies in what Manchester Pride was saying and that some of the charity’s concerns weren’t had not been resolved.

Manchester City Council has been approached for comment.

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