Vandal ‘tags’ bee mural dedicated to Arena victims
WALL PAYS TRIBUTE TO 22 KILLED IN BOMBING
A CALLOUS vandal has defaced a huge Northern Quarter mural dedicated to the 22 people killed in the Manchester Arena bombing.
In the wake of the atrocity, tributes to those murdered popped up across the city – and beyond.
The worker bee became a symbol of unity and strength, with thousands of people got it tattooed on their bodies.
The M.E.N. commissioned a massive mural on the side of The Koffee Pot on Oldham Street in the Northern Quarter weeks later.
Each bee, pictured swarming around a honey heart, represents one of the innocent people killed in the horrific attack. It was completed over a weekend in June last year by graffiti artist Russell Meehan, also know as ‘Qubek.’
Two days after the attack – on May 22, 2017 – Russ painted the old toilet block in Stevenson Square with bees and two hands joined together in a heart.
That prompted the M.E.N. to commission him to create the mural.
Working from atop a cherry picker, armed with dozens of cans of spray paint, Russ spent two days creating his masterpiece.
Cafe bosses previously turned down all requests for it to be used for a mural, but kindly agreed to let Russ work his magic.
The mural has now been targeted by a vandal, who has ‘tagged’ the wall. It is unclear when the wall was defaced. Manchester council’s city centre spokesman Pat Karney said: “I hope the people who have done this realise the disrespect they are showing to the tragedy that took 22 lives.
“I hope that they clear it up – or do something about it once they see the upset it causes all those who have been affected by the Manchester Arena attack.”
The bee was adopted as a motif for Manchester during the industrial revolution.
Seven are included in the crest of the city’s arms, which were granted to the Borough of Manchester in 1842.
At the time, it represented the hard work of Mancunians and the textile mills that were commonly described as ‘hives of activity.’
But following the Arena attack, it has come to mean so much more.
Graffiti on the Manchester Bee Mural on the side of the Koffee Pot on Oldham Street