Little Amal: North West prepares to welcome puppet showing plight of refugees

ITV Granada Reports' Claire Hannah has the latest.

A 3.5m-high puppet will take to the streets of the North West to highlight the plight of the journeys millions of refugees make every year.

Little Amal, a nine-year-old refugee girl, has 'walked' from the Syria-Turkey border and will complete her journey in Manchester on 3 November.

Her 5,000 mile trip started in July and has taken her through Greece, Italy, France, Switzerland, Germany, Belgium, before crossing to the UK.

Little Amal Credit: Manchester International Festival

Ahead of her arrival in the North West workshops have been taking place in Rochdale, Longsight in Manchester and in Wigan where communities, including many refugees and asylum seekers, have come together to create a welcome present for Little Amal, a giant quilt.

The quilt will be presented to Little Amal when she arrives in Manchester on Wednesday 3 November.

A crowd of 4,000 people will be there to welcome her and there will also be a celebration of song, dance, live music and puppetry.

Full North West schedule:

  • Sunday 31 October at 3pm - Little Amal visits Wigan

  • Tuesday 2 November - Little Amal visits Rochdale

  • Wednesday 3 November - Little Amal arrives in Manchester (Castlefield Bowl)

Little Amal, whose name means hope in Arabic, was created by Handspring, the company that made the puppets in War Horse.

She's operated by a team of eight puppeteers who work shifts to control her legs, arms and facial features.

The Walk has been brought to Manchester by the Manchester International Festival.