A statue built to show awareness of a dangerous crime, the Knife Angel is set to continue it’s tour of the UK again in 2024.

The Knife Angel created by the British Ironwork Centre, involved sculptor Alfie Bradley to highlight the impact knife crime has on communities.

The angel itself is made from over 100,000 seized blades- some of these were still covered in blood.

Alfie said that it all started after he created his last piece, a giant gorilla made of spoons. He said “I kept seeing knife crime popping up all the time on the news.” 

I wanted to make it twice the size of my last piece because the bigger the piece, the bigger the impact.

Alfie Bradley

He wanted to spread awareness on the impact knife crime has on society. He’d already created a piece using spoons, why couldn’t he create one using the weapon itself? And that’s where it all began. After countless news stories on the crime, the knife angel was born.

Alfie set to work building the angel. “When I first thought about using weapons [for the piece], the first thing that came to mind was an angel.” There was never a second thought, a memorial design celebrating those lives who have been lost to the blade. 

“I wanted to make it twice the size of my last piece because the bigger the piece, the bigger the impact.”

The angel reaches at staggering 27 foot in height. This was also to do with Bradley using the whole blade on the statue. 

The hardest part building that piece was meeting all the families who’d lost people through knife crime.

Alfie Bradley.

Audio: Alfie Bradley speaking about the way the Knife Angel looks.

Alfie fanned out the blades of the knifes to create the wings of the angel. It created a shield, protecting the angel from the violence that has previously been portrayed with these weapons. 

Speaking on the affects with creating such a heart aching piece, Alfie said it only hit him once he’d finished the angel. 

“The hardest part building that piece was meeting all the families who’d lost people through knife crime.” 

Seeing all the people who had lost a loved one to a knife, was breathtaking. The angel is a symbolic piece towards that person they’ve lost.

Since the release of the Knife Angel, it has been touring up and down the country spreading the awareness it was created to do. Thousands have travelled across the country to see it for themselves. 

In 2019/20, London recorded the highest rate of 179 offences involving a knife per 100,000 population, a slight increase on a rate 169 in 2018/19.

3500 knife crime offences were committed by children in 2022.

Almost half of all knife crime in the UK takes place in London, Greater Manchester and the West Midlands.

In the year ending March 2023, there were over 50,000 offences involving a sharp instrument in both England and Wales. This was a 4.7% higher than in 2021/22.

Every year, more people are dragged into the crime, with more people losing their lives. This needs to be stopped.