East Grinstead Town Council has placed two commemorative benches for the Covid pandemic, one bench to remember all who have been lost or suffered through the lockdowns and one to thank the great efforts of so many who have and continue to help to bring us through.

The two benches were placed at the McIndoe Lawn on 24th February and unveiled by Cllr Helen Farren (Chairman of the Amenities and Tourism Committee,  pictured),   Cllr Farren said

“These benches are our permanent memorial to all affected by the Pandemic, through the grief of losing a loved one, the loneliness of shielding and even being restricted from going outside.  We also wanted to separately say thank you to all those working so hard to keep us safe and bring us through.  As the Prime Minister announced the roadmap towards the end of restrictions and a return to normality, it seemed appropriate for East Grinstead to unveil our memorial”.

There are two benches; one is a bespoke steel bench with representative images of all groups of people touched by the pandemic, including words to those lost and with an additional inscription:  .

For many months, to sit outside was but a wish

The second is an EGTC standard bench, with the inscription:

Recognising all those who helped to overcome Covid 19
NHS, Key Workers and all volunteers

It is hoped as people sit on the benches by the Statue they will reflect on the struggle of the second world war where pioneering surgery was developed, through to the 2020/21 pandemic where again pioneering science was needed to bring us back to being able to enjoy the simple things like sitting on a bench in the sunshine.  While remembering all those who did not make it.