One striking and moving memorial event to come out of the Grenfell Tower tragedy is the monthly ‘Silent Walk’. The walk first happened on June 19th 2017 and then became a monthly event occurring on the 14th.
Participating in the walk is a humbling, meditative experience. It’s a marker of time and a way to feel connected with the community, walking silently in each others company is both powerful tribute and tacit protest. The walk generally begins at Notting Hill Methodist Church where survivors and bereaved families take the front and a queue forms behind. The walk progresses up Lancaster Road to Ladbroke Grove, turning left it moves under the Westway Flyover and turns left into Cambridge Gardens all the way down to Bramley Road. The circle is completed after turning left and left again under the flyover to congregate in the car park area in front of the ‘Peoples Wall’. There the silence is broken, people talk and catch up with friends. Speeches are made and thanks given to those who have come – often groups from around the country have travelled in support.
We are encouraged to face the Tower – visible in the near distance – and to hold a 72 second silence to remember the dead. A call of ‘Justice!’ is repeated several times and then the crowd embraces, and slowly begins to disperse.
“And all of the writing on the people’s wall
Speaks of the pain and the shame of it all.
As each month passes the silent walk,
When you know what you’re saying, there’s no need to talk”
From song, ‘Too Many Hours in the Day’. Steve Mepsted 2018
Text appearing in the video: “Politics is the difference between life and death…” – poem by Anthony Anaxagorou
Video: 21 Mins : 40 Secs