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Manchester creatives unite to turn concert attack poem into a book

This is the Place to be turned into a book

Manchester’s creative community is coming together to design an illustrated book of This is the Place, the poem by Tony Walsh that was read at the vigil for the 22 who died in last week’s terror attack on the city.

A total of 61 creatives across the city, including designers Peter Saville and Malcolm Garret, will each take a line from This is the Place and contribute a creative design that will be published on a page in the book. Walsh and Andy Burnham, the mayor of Greater Manchester, will write the forewords, while a number of the city’s creative agencies have pledged their support alongside independent artists, photographers and illustrators.

Proceeds from the book’s sale will go towards charities Forever Manchester, the Greater Manchester Mayor's Homelessness Fund and the Manchester Evening News Fund.

James Torry, part of the creative collective and owner of production agency Doodledo Motion, said: “The idea came after hearing Tony's poem. It was powerful. It gave a city that was struggling to know what or how to feel some language to articulate it. It gave us permission to feel sadness, defiance, hurt, anger and humour.

"We have such a strong creative community in the city and I saw this as a way for us to come together, collaborate and make something for Manchester that was hopeful for the future."

Burnham added: "I don’t think there was anyone that wasn’t moved by Tony’s eloquent and cathartic words on Tuesday evening. Just when we needed a voice of defiance and someone to articulate a sense of Manc pride and self-belief Tony stepped forward.

"To show all of our thanks to him I am pleased that the city’s creatives approached me with this idea, I was really impressed. It’s fitting that the creative community in Manchester should rally so quickly and with such a perfect timing. It’s a wonderful tribute idea and I can’t wait to help them get this book out."

The book is due to be launched in August.

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