I REMEMBER doors being slowly opened, light spilling out into the dark, the sound of metal pans being beaten, carrying through the cold air that first night of clapping.


It is a memory we can all relate to and binds us together during a period of time when our lives had changed unimaginably.
The moving sentence is just one of hundreds of passages collected as part of the I remember project for Scotland’s Covid Memorial. It is a communal memory and one which many of us will remember from those early lockdown days.

Read more: Scotland's Covid Memorial: How public support and fundraising challenges helped to reach campaign target
As we emerged from the first national lockdown, The Herald reflected on how the lives of our readers, colleagues, and friends had been affected. Sadly, many people were grieving and we asked when is the right time to remember – a thought which was very much on the mind of South Side minister Rev Neil Galbraith and was reported upon in the newspaper.

HeraldScotland: Work is under way in Glasgow's Pollok Country ParkWork is under way in Glasgow's Pollok Country Park
It led to The Herald launching a campaign to create a memorial as a tribute to all those who had lost their lives during the pandemic or had been affected by it.
As we had seen during weeks of lockdown with inspiring community spirit, our campaign was an opportunity to bring people together – individuals, organisations, local and national government united to get behind the project.
Bereaved families fundraised for the project and leading entrepreneurs donated generously as we strived to raise funds.

Read more: Thank you Scotland - you did it! Covid memorial hits funds target
It was different from any other newspaper campaign and that meant the approach also had to be different. The Herald worked with partners Glasgow City Council and charity greenspace Scotland.
A memorial to mark such a significant period of time in all of our lives would have to have the support of the people of Scotland to make it work. This was not our memorial – it was a memorial for every Scot who had been affected.

HeraldScotland: Covid memorial artist Alec Finlay reached out to peopleCovid memorial artist Alec Finlay reached out to people
It was artist and poet Alec Finlay, who was appointed to create the memorial, who brought people together through a simple but deeply emotional idea.
He encouraged people to write I remember sentences, based on an idea of American author Joe Brainard, and we received hundreds of them. There are some which many of us can identify with yet others are deeply personal to the individual who wrote them such as I remember Andrea – it says it all.
These passages are a key part of the artwork for the memorial at Glasgow’s Pollok Country Park, which is a series of tree supports which form a memorial walk.
It was an ambitious two-year project resulting in a memorial close to £250,000.
Is it a legacy for The Herald? Perhaps, but more importantly it is a legacy for the people of Scotland as we could not have done it without them. Thank you.