LISTEN TO the story behind the ‘This is the Place’ poem originally commissioned by Forever Manchester that instantly became a symbol of resilience in the wake of the devastating atrocity at the Manchester Arena on May 22nd 2017.
In 2012, Forever Manchester commissioned local poet Tony Walsh (aka Longfella) to create a poem to encapsulate the spirit of Greater Manchester, to celebrate our local communities and help explain what Forever Manchester does. In 2011 we decided to change our name from the ‘Community Foundation for Greater Manchester’ to Forever Manchester, so the commission of poem was very much part of the rebranding process to help us reach a wider audience.
Tony performed the poem at a number of Forever Manchester events, and with the help of local creative agency Studio North, visuals were added to a shortened version of the poem and published on YouTube.
Since writing ‘This Is the Place’, Tony has written a number of follow-up poems for Forever Manchester, which he has performed at numerous Forever Manchester events, including our annual Birthday Party, where he received standing ovations on every occasion.
Less than 24 hours following the terror attack on Manchester Arena on 22nd May 2017, Tony Walsh performed the ‘This Is the Place’ poem at the vigil at Manchester Town Hall, in front of thousands of people gathered in Albert Square and millions of people across the world on TV.
Over 60 creatives from Manchester, including Peter Saville and Malcolm Garret, collaborated with Tony Walsh to turn his ‘This Is the Place’ poem into a book. The book has been released and is now available to the public. Listen to the interview with the man behind the project, and find out where you can purchase the book, here.