Thoughtful Birmingham celebrities – including Line of Duty’s Claudia Jessie – will be celebrating the lives of their loved ones at an unusual art installation created by a local hospice.
The Birmingham-born star will be joined by broadcaster Llewela Bailey – as well as presenters from BBC WM – in dedicating a flower during Birmingham St Mary’s ‘Forget Me Not’ appeal.
Forget Me Not – which takes place from Monday 2 to Sunday 8 April – is a beautiful art installation of wrought iron forget-me-nots, which will be planted in the heart of Brindleyplace. Each flower will represent the life of a special someone who is sadly no longer with us.
Claudia, who starred alongside Thandie Newton in the hit BBC series, recently visited the Selly Park-based hospice to see first-hand the care provided to local people living with life-limiting illness.
After witnessing the beautiful work the doctors and nurses do at the hospice, the Moseley actress chose to dedicate her forget-me-not to them. She said: “I’m dedicating my forget-me-not flower to every nurse, doctor and team member here at Birmingham St Mary’s, to represent my deep respect for the work they do. These people make precious and priceless contributions to our lives by supporting us at the end of life. This flower is a symbol of my gratitude for their compassionate efforts.”
Staff at BBC WM – including Llewela Bailey, Daz Hales and Alison Hammond – are also backing the appeal by dedicating a flower to legendary broadcaster, Ed Doolan. The much-loved presenter – often described as a veteran of Birmingham radio – passed away on Tuesday 16 January this year (2018).
Ed was a patron of Birmingham St Mary’s for many years and a passionate supporter of its work and volunteers. Llewela Bailey, who worked alongside him at BBC WM, said: “Ed was a tremendous friend and a wonderful broadcaster, who was a true champion of the people. That’s why the team at BBC WM would like to dedicate a forget-me-not flower to him – as a way to honour his legacy and celebrate the incredible work he did for our city.”
Local people are also being encouraged to support the Brindleyplace display, by dedicating their own forget-me-nots. Flowers can be kept after the event, as a lasting tribute to their loved ones.
All donations will help fund the valuable work of Birmingham St Mary’s, which provides vital care at the hospice, in people’s own homes and in the local community.
Hamish Shilliday, head of fundraising at Birmingham St Mary’s, said: “Forget Me Not is a beautiful way to honour the memories of our loved ones so it’s fantastic to see local celebrities supporting the appeal. It costs £8 million to run the hospice each year – over half of which needs to come from voluntary donations – so we truly rely on the generosity of local people to fund our crucial services.”
To dedicate a flower or to find out more about the Forget Me Not installation, take a look here.