IT IS a way to offer healing and reflection with the aim of reaching out to people as part of The Herald’s covid memorial project.

An open day is being held in Glasgow's south side and is an opportunity to find out more about the project.

The event on Friday, July 30, is also a chance to meet artist Alec Finlay who is leading the engagement phase which will help shape the future memorial.

It will be held at the Hidden Gardens, at the Tramway, from 11am to 4pm and it is also a way to become involved in our I remember theme for reflection of the pandemic.

We are campaigning to create a memorial to Scots who lost their lives during the Covid 19 pandemic and for anyone affected by the past 16 months.

Read more: I remember: How you can take part in reflecting through our national covid memorial campaign

Our aim is to create a fitting memorial to those who lost their lives during the pandemic and a place for anyone who has been affected whether it be grieving for a lost loved one or recovering from the virus itself and living with ‘long covid.’

We have raised more than £63,000 towards the project with generous donations from readers, bereaved families and the business world. Our fundraising was kickstarted by a donation from the Harry Clarke group of companies in Hillington. They made a £5000 donation as one of their directors lost close friend Jim Russell to covid. The Glasgow truck driver was just 51 when he died last May. His fiancée Connie McCready has been supporting the campaign ever since.

The national memorial will be located in the stunning grounds of Pollok Country Park after an offer of a site in the park was made by Glasgow City Council.

Earlier this year we appointed artist and poet Alec Finlay to lead the engagement and development phase.

It is through theme of I remember that he has been to reaching out to people.

We are asking people to write their own I remember forms, an anonymous single sentence of how they feel about or think of the pandemic. It is these reflections which our artist will use to feed into the eventual memorial in Pollok Country Park.

Read more: Scotland's covid memorial campaign boosted by trust fund donation

Mr Finlay, who previously worked on the national organ donor memorial, hopes the open day will be an opportunity for people to find out more about the project and take part in sessions to put together their own I remember forms.

He said: “This is an open day which will include movement workshops and 'I remember' writing sessions, as well as activities collecting memories of green spaces during the pandemic. Anyone is welcome to attend.”

A further workshop open will be held on Saturday, September 11 at Pollok Country Park from 11am to 3pm. It will also include 'I remember' writing sessions, as well as activities collecting memories of green spaces during the pandemic. The numbers of people would be able to attend will depend on covid restrictions at the time.

Mr Finlay, who is working with colleagues Lucy Richards and Ken Cockburn, said he had been deeply touched reading the range of contributions they have had to 'I remember’.

He said: "I have received recently from bereaved families and NHS staff. My inbox has been like a burn flowing and then, some days, there are waterfalls, where it fills up. Each person’s memory helps to make the individual experience of the pandemic real – sometimes tragic personal losses are expressed in simple almost mundane memories, which are moving – bad Dad jokes, shared walks, the texture of a wall – while others strike to the heart – the fears we’ve all sometimes felt, a son lost too early, a beloved mum now gone.”

Ms McCready, who has been leading Covid 19 Families Scotland group, penned her own I remember, saying: “I remember not being able to visit Jim and hold his hand, tell him he was going to be ok for the 35 days he was in hospital and only able to talk to him via video call for the last two weeks of his life.”

She added: “I could have written about so many things to do with the pandemic and losing Jim and once I started they just came to me.”

You can sign up for the open day event at

To submit an I remember email

You can donate go to: 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. Keep up to date with the latest news at