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Memorial to self-sacrifice

Posted 29th May 2009
Watts Contemporary Gallery


Last week I spent a day at Postman’s Park, preparing it for the celebrations there on 3 June. Watts Gallery staff, the ceramicist who designed the new plaque and volunteers worked together to clean up the monument, refresh the original lettering declaring the wall’s intention as a memorial to self-sacrifice and site the ceramic panel.

It was wonderful to see the dirt of years disappear and to see the original tiles gleam in the sun. It also gave me a chance to look again at the stories that unfold for every visitor to the park. It was clear that from the great interest of those who questioned us as we worked that they were equally moved, giving us cash donations and expressing the profound influence the monument had made on them.

One, a new visitor to London, said that all the sites he had seen in the metropolis was dwarfed by the impact made upon him by Postman’s Park. It is a truly moving and special place. It is everything that a grand memorial is not; simply expressed words placed at eye-level in the medium of a mass-produced tile. Yet each is individual, factual and profound. It is the most appropriate celebration of ‘everyday heroes’ that one could imagine. Join us on 3rd June for our celebrations. Click here to find out more.