IN THE aftermath of the murderous attacks in Manchester, communities up and down the Costa Blanca got together to pay their own respects to the dead and injured.
Whether they or their family and friends knew someone directly involved or just simply wanted to show their support, they gathered in their hundreds to show their solidarity. Sadly, such demonstrations will no doubt be repeated in the wake of the atrocities in London at the weekend.
During one such organised vigil on Urbanisation La Marina, San Fulgencio the idea was casually raised about having a permanent place in the area to be used as a memorial garden. Local resident Debbie Alger, originally from Manchester, who organised the event explained her thoughts.
“With my roots in the affected area, and being so far away here in Spain, I just wanted to show my feelings and support to those affected. I know one of the families personally,” explained Debbie.
But it was during this emotional time that Debbie had her idea to create something more permanent; not just a memorial for the Manchester victims but a place to remember all loved ones that have passed.
“As I lit my candle that night, all of a sudden I remembered my own Dad who died a few years ago having lived on La Marina for years and thought that I had no place to light a candle for him or lay some flowers on his birthday,” said Debbie. “It then occurred to me that so many other people here would be in similar situations who would appreciate somewhere nice and quiet and close to home to visit and remember and to reflect whenever they wanted to.”
Debbie floated her idea for a ‘Garden of Reflection’ on Facebook and received an incredible amount of feedback almost immediately. She has now embarked on organising and encouraging a series of local fundraising events to help with the construction and maintenance of the planned area which has been given to Debbie by the local San Fulgencio council. It will be in the shaded garden area next to the La Marina market place complete with wheelchair access and open to people of all nationalities who wish to remember their loved ones.
Debbie said: “I have a vision of how I would like it to look but it’s not just my garden; it’s for everyone so any ideas are most welcome. I’ve already been overwhelmed with the amount of support and encouragement from friends, colleagues, businesses and strangers alike. This is going to be a big team effort”
If anyone would like to make a donation toward the Garden of Reflection, contact Debbie on 634 366 273.