The Knife Angel in Northamptonshire

The Knife Angel in Northamptonshire

Having had to drop my car off for a service, I decided that I would take a walk through the Northampton town centre just to take some photographs for my own pleasure and with nothing specific in mind.

As I approached Wood Hill I was surprised to see a low loader making its way around All Saints’ Church in the heart of the town centre then I noticed that it was carrying the Knife Angel to Northamptonshire. As described on the Knife Angel webpage: the Knife Angel is made from over 100,000 seized knives and blades and was created to highlight the negative effects of violent behaviour whilst solidifying our critical need for social change.

Awaiting the arrival of the Knife Angel were (amongst others) Crispin Holborow (the new High Sheriff of Northamptonshire), Stephen Mold (Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner for Northamptonshire), Angie Kennedy (CEO of C2C Social Action) and representatives of Off The Streets and West Northamptonshire Council. With camera in hand I changed gear from an unstructured wander to trying to capture this important and significant civic event.

I learned that Angie Kennedy of C2C Social Action was the catalyst for the Knife Angel coming to Northamptonshire along with the collaboration of the North Northamptonshire and West Northamptonshire Councils. While we didn’t have much time to speak on Friday, we had a longer conversation on Saturday at the candlelit vigil outside All Saints’ Church when I learned that the Knife Angel would travel to Wellingborough on 14th May and then proceed to Corby in the north of the county from the 15th to the 29th May 2022.

If I am covering any event, I would have normally spend time researching the background of the event, the key personnel and have an idea of what equipment I might need and, of course, customer requirements; for the installation of the Knife Angel, while not exactly flying by the seats of my pants, it was unplanned and completely spontaneous though I must acknowledge and thank my friend Roger Coleman (County Sargent) for introducing me to various attendees. I have covered several civic events in Northampton for Roger and it is always a pleasure to bump into him.

As one would expect, there was significant media coverage of the arrival and installation of the Knife Angel with some incredible drone footage being taken (Note to self: investigate drone cameras!)


I did learn from Father Oliver Coss of that there would be a service and candlelit vigil to be held the next day (Saturday) so having taken a set of photographs and with promises to share some with the various organisations, I left for the day to edit the images you see here.

For a civic event, I would normally expect to be hired for the day but given the importance of this event and that I had (effectively) stumbled across it taking place I was happy to provide photographs to the civic and community organisations to support this project. I have said elsewhere that the Knife Angel is the most important piece of public art that I have ever seen or likely to see.

Moving onto Saturday, knowing that there would be a candlelit vigil in the evening I was better prepared and was able to take a lens that would be suitable for capturing images in low light as well as a flash gun to capture some photographs of the civic leaders who would be present.

While covering this important event, I was also very aware of the solemnity of the occasion – hopefully I was able to capture the moments of reflection and contemplation without being intrusive.

Since this event, I have been asked (and gladly accepted the invitation) to travel to Wellingborough on the 14th May where the Knife Angel will make a one-day appearance.

As I mentioned earlier, like everyone in business, I would normally want to be hired and paid for my services but – every once in a while – it is good to be able to support a community initiative and provide images that represent the hard work of the organisers and the organisations who enabled the event.

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The Knife Angel in Northamptonshire Pictures

The Knife Angel in Northamptonshire
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