A garden of remembrance with a little burst of sunshine to provide hope was one of the key messages stemming from our memorial campaign group.

As a specially convened steering group set up to take The Herald's garden of remembrance campaign forward met for the first time, it is looking to incorporate the colour yellow which has now become associated with those who have lost their lives to coronavirus.

Steering group member Rev Neil Galbraith said the garden could have a link to the idea of sunshine as a way of highlighting the memorial for generations to come.

Fellow steering group member and gardening expert Dave Allan, who writes for The Herald Magazine, added: "I think the colour of planting is very important and the use of the colour yellow would be very calming.

"I think the idea of water would be important as it can be very soothing."

Read more: Herald Memorial Garden: Everything you need to know

The campaign to create a garden as a tribute to those in Scotland who have lost their lives to the coronavirus is also looking to enlist the help of a landscape architect.

Our aim is to reach the design stage for the memorial garden and bring experts on board. We want to work towards a design that will allow us to present it to the families, friends, park users, and members of the public who will stop and pause at the location.

The vision is to create a garden of remembrance where people can sit in quiet reflection and find solace. Glasgow City Council generously offered us a site in Pollok Country Park. We have also received offers of help and have raised almost £9000 towards our £50,000 fundraising target. We are moving on to the stage of design, size and what should be included.

Donald Martin, editor of The Herald said: “We are trying to do but something which is desperately needed given the tragic consequences of coronavirus.

“We want to create a quiet place of reflection for people and we are delighted to have the help of our steering group members to deliver the most perfect and fitting memorial to those who have lost their lives.”

The garden campaign stemmed from an idea led by Mr Galbraith, of Glasgow’s Cathcart Old Parish Church where a memorial cairn was created for bereaved families following the first Gulf War.

Mr Galbraith said: “It was very important that people had something to touch with our memorial and they had pebbles to lay down. I think the garden memorial should have a tactile element to it.”


The location for The Herald's Garden of Remembrance

Mr Allan added he had a particular interest in the memorial garden and knew first hand how such an area could be an inspiration.

He said: “I had a near death experience myself following a road accident 40 years ago. Through the process of recovery I had to decide whether I was going to be regretful for the rest of my life or I was going to rebuild. I found gardening was a massive help and I got a huge amount of inspiration from it.”

Read more: Herald Campaign: 'I was blown away by memorial garden idea,' says bereaved daughter ahead of fundraiser

We revealed the exact site with the help of Rachel Smith, a landscape architect with the city council who has been involved in a number of public memorials and helped to identify the location in Pollok Park.

George Gillespie, executive director of neighbourhoods and sustainability and the council’s steering group representative, said: “We are here to help and eventually maintain the site, but I think it would help to bring in an external landscape architect."

The steering group is keen to hear from anyone who can offer their help in this particular area of expertise.

Ally McLaws, steering group member and a former health communications executive, has ties with some of the families who have lost a loved one to Covid-19. He said: “One idea which has worked well at the Princess and Princess of Wales Hospice in Glasgow , where I am involved, is a tribute tree. It might give an opportunity for families to have a link.”

To donate go to: gofundme.com/herald-garden-of-remembrance. You can also send donations via post to The Herald Garden of Remembrance Campaign, Herald & Times, 125 Fullarton Drive, Glasgow G32 8FG with cheques made payable to The Herald.

If you want to get in touch, email us at memorialgarden@theherald.co.uk