As you may recall, a few weeks back it was suggested on SalfordOnline's Facebook Group that a petition be put to the council to get a much loved and respected hero a permanent and fitting memorial which will immortalise Salford's most heroic son forever.
Alan Henning came to lose his life after being callously and inhumanely murdered as he sought to relieve the pain and suffering of a people he did not know, he did not see race or religion, colour or ethnicity, he just saw people hurting and crying out for help, and so off he rode with a truck full of supplies to try and ease their suffering. His heroic actions brought aid to countless people who would have otherwise suffered greatly and so it is the duty of this City to ensure that his bravery and determination to do the best he could to help others is never forgotten.
With this in mind we have had a petition running for the past few weeks and thanks to reports and publicity from our united local media, the tally currently stands at 1,816 but I truly believe that before Friday, Salford can do better and raise that number even higher.
We need to send a message loud and clear to those who can make this happen and ensure that it gets done.
Thanks to the amazing work of Eccles Councillor, Sharmina August, we have secured the complete backing of the entire Council who are united in supporting this bid to get a road, public space or public building named in his honour.
Sharmina has been amazing with her support for this cause and just a few weeks back, she delivered a letter calling for action which was counter signed by all of the Cities Councillors, our local MP's as well as our City Mayor.
The letter called upon Cllr Derek Antrobus, lead member for for planning and sustainable development, to make it happen, and he wholeheartedly agreed it should.
Work continues in the background to find a suitable permanent and lasting memorial which can be dedicated to Alan, the preferred option being a road named 'Alan Henning Way' to be dedicated in his honour.
The letter states:
“The people of Salford are united in wanting to honour Alan’s memory; he is an inspiration that future generations of Salfordians will remember with pride.
“Alan’s abiding heroism deserves to be immortalised in his home city, which, to this day carries in his heart. If each of us approached life the same way Alan Henning did, the world would be a kinder more decent place.
“We the undersigned, call on Salford City Council to name a road in Eccles, Alan Henning Way.”
To drive into danger in order to aid others, as many flea to safety from that danger, is the most noble thing to do. Alan is an inspiration to us all and he truly does represent the best of us, he encapsulates the true spirit of what it is to be a proud Salfordian and it is our duty to ensure that neither he or his bravery are ever forgotten in this City.
So please share the link above, sign the petition and help us get the man the recognition he deserves.
The petition will be printed over the weekend and it will be delivered to Swinton Civic Centre on the morning of Monday the 15th of July, the petition will then be presented to council on Wednesday the 17th of July.
I really can not thank Cllr August enough, she had worked extremely hard on galvanising support at lightening speed, without her input and the countless hours that she has put into this, it simply would not be anywhere close to this stage so soon.
Sharmina is a recent addition to the ranks of the Council having been elected to serve Eccles in May's local elections but she has certainly made her mark already and has followed in Alan's footstep and showed the true Spirit of Salford in support of the community she serves.
I would like to end this by giving special mention to Alan's family, they have remained stoic and resolute, dignified and strong throughout, they have retained composure at the most difficult and challenging time of their lives. They have shown the same strength and bravery that Alan has and so on behalf of the people of Salford, this is as much for you as it is Alan.
You have our utmost respect and like Alan you are forever in our hearts.