Parents of Connor Brown welcome arrival of Knife Angel sculpture in Sunderland

Knife Angel is made out of 100,000 blades which were handed into police forces across the country. Credit: ITV Tyne Tees

The family of a Sunderland teenager who was stabbed to death have welcomed the arrival of the Knife Angel to the city.

18-year-old Connor Brown was stabbed five times after trying to defuse an argument outside a pub in the city in 2019.

Now the sculpture, which tours the country, has arrived in Sunderland to kick off a month of safety events aimed at young people carrying weapons.

Connor's parents hope the Knife Angel will act as a talking point to open up conversations around knife crime. Credit: ITV Tyne Tees

The sculpture, created from 100,000 blades which were handed into police forces across the country, will stand in the city centre for a month as part of a nationwide tour.

Tanya Brown, Connor's mother, said: "The knife angel is a focal point where we can open conversations around knife crime. And it's that initial conversation that's going to make that difference.

"It's about engaging with the young people, letting them know that it's not a bad topic to discuss and the fact they can be open and honest about what's going on in society, how they feel about knife crime.

"We find a lot of young people are aware of knife crime and the impact that it has but it's about educating those that don't at the same time."

Created by the British Ironworks Centre in 2018, the 27 foot statue weighs three and a half tonnes.

The artwork has previously been displayed in other North East communities, and its hoped that it will now make an impact on Wearside.

Earlier this year, Northumbria Police used virtual reality to replay Connor's murder investigation in an attempt to deter teens from getting involved in knife crime.

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