The idea for the memorial garden came from people who live on Sceaux Gardens estate. A small community garden already sits at the bottom of the block. For the first residency, an artist called Andrea Mason helped children create their own allotment. They planted vegetables and flowers and families continued to look after the allotment themselves. At the moment, there are potatoes, lettuces, radishes, strawberries (much nibbled by passing children) and sweet peas. We hope this little garden area at the bottom of the flats can become a place of beauty and hope. Despite not being fenced in for the last two years, it has never once been vandalised. It's always been something that the local community has valued and looked after and we hope this will continue. We hope to plant six fruit trees in remembrance of the six victims of the fire at the Summer Festival on 23rd August.
Frances Williams The Lakanal Families Fund has been set up by the Sceaux Gardens Tenants and Residents Association to meet the needs of families affected by the tragic fire: clothing, toiletries and food, along with counselling support and provision for children. Money from this fund will go towards the construction of a Memorial Garden. The South London Gallery has been working directly with families from Sceaux Gardens estate for over two and a half years. We took over an old hairdressing shop, opposite a block called Lakanal, as a base for our weekly activities. Artists come every six months to try different projects, working together with the children and young people. On 3 July I watched the fire break out at Lakanal along with many of families from the estate. At first we didn't realise that the firemen hadn't been able to get everyone out. Later, we learnt that six people had died, including Saturday Club member Thais along with her younger brother and mum. Over 300 people also became homeless as a result of the fire.