Harpur Centre in Bedford honours those who lost their lives to Covid-19 with yellow heart

Special installation to tie in with national #LoveForTheLost campaign

Tuesday, 16th March 2021, 6:15 pm

The Harpur Centre is remembering those who have lost their lives to Covid-19 with a special installation.

A giant yellow heart has been installed on the basement floor to tie in with the national #LoveForTheLost campaign.

The campaign was founded by the Yellow Hearts To Remember Covid-19 support group to raise awareness and honour loved ones lost due to coronavirus.

The giant yellow heart on the Harpur Centre's basement floor

Yellow Hearts to Remember Covid-19 is a support group formed by a community of families bereaved during the pandemic to ensure their loved ones are recognised and remembered as more than just a statistic.

The group came together when the Gompertz family put a yellow heart in their window to remember their loved - and quickly took off across the country.

Samantha Laycock, centre manager at Harpur Centre, said: “The pandemic has presented unprecedented and extraordinary challenges for our community, our retailers, our teams and our visitors. So, when we were approached by a lady called Lynette who sadly lost her father last May, we were eager to show our support of families across Bedford.

"We are delighted that we are able to acknowledge those in our community who have been left grieving and honour their loved ones who have sadly lost their lives due to Covid-19.”

Lynette Luparello, a member of the Yellow Hearts to Remember Covid-19 support group, said:“I am deeply moved that the centre took the idea on board, knowing that it has become reality gives me great comfort and it’s wonderful that our loved ones are being remembered. Almost a year on from lockdown, the timing of The Harpur Centre’s unveiling is perfect.”

She added, “The installation is not only to remember the lost, but to honour the staff at Bedford Hospital who have worked tirelessly throughout this pandemic.

"When my father was in hospital on the Elizabeth Ward, the staff were so compassionate in the caring of him. As we were not allowed to visit him when he passed in May, the nurse on the ward held an I-pad to my dad’s ear so he could hear our voices, she promised that he would not be on his own when he passed, and I will always be indebted to her for that.”