Attack on Forbury Gardens: ‘Impressive’ James Furlong will be remembered with mosaic at Wokingham School
Staff and students at a Wokingham school have unveiled designs for a new memorial to an ‘impressive’ teacher who was killed in a horrific terrorist attack in Reading last year.
The Holt School has revealed the design of the memorial to James Furlong, who died after being stabbed in Forbury Gardens.
The school raised funds and worked with international award-winning artist Gary Drostle to produce a mosaic in memory of him.
Read more: A memorial service at Forbury Gardens to be held for victims of terrorist attacks on the occasion of the first anniversary
Gary came up with the idea with the help of the school’s students and his memorial team.
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A school statement said: “The final design will integrate James’ many passions and interests and reflect his impressive heritage.”
A special event will take place at the school on Monday June 28 at 3:30 p.m., the day after the anniversary of the attack
Due to the Covid situation, the ceremony is by invitation only but will be broadcast live for those who cannot attend.
For more information, send an email to [email protected]
The school raises funds for charities that were close to Mr. Furlong’s heart – a gofundme page can be found here.
Mr. Furlong, Joe Ritchie-Bennett and David Wails all died after being stabbed in the attack.
A tribute paid by Mr. Furlong’s family after the incident said: “” James was a wonderful man. He was good looking, smart, honest and fun.
“He was the best son, brother, uncle and partner you could wish for.
“We are grateful for the memories he has given us all.”
“We will never forget him and he will live on in our hearts forever.”
A memorial service is scheduled to take place Sunday, June 20 at 4 p.m. to remember the three men.
Friends and family of the three, other injured people, witnesses, members of the emergency services, members of the Reading community services and members of the voluntary sector will all be invited.
Councilor David Stevens, Mayor of Reading, will lead the service and include tributes to victims and readings, after the flowers are laid at the bandstand.
Reading Borough Council invites the public to join a live broadcast on its Facebook page.
Members of the public can attend, but places are very limited due to the current coronavirus restrictions on public gatherings. Anyone wishing to attend can reserve a place here.
Councilor Jason Brock, Head of Reading Borough Council, previously said: “One year later Reading will come together as a community on Sunday June 20 and, in solidarity with their families and friends, remember James , Joe and David.
“In the days following the horrific events of the past year, Reading has seen a wave of heartache and sorrow that has united the local community, with the support of people across the country and around the world.
“I remain extremely proud of the united and determined way Reading responded at the time. I’m also sure he’ll react the same a year later, whether people attend the memorial service or choose to quietly pay homage at home.
“Our thoughts will always be with those who have lost loved ones and with those who are injured.”
Striker Khairi Saadallah was sentenced to life imprisonment for the killings.