Covid: Burnley plumber turns garden into public memorial

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image copyrightJames Anderson
image captionThe garden has a range of features including a plaque and a wishing well

A plumber who dedicated his spare time to helping people during the coronavirus pandemic has opened up his front garden as a memorial to those who died.

James Anderson created the space at his home in Burnley complete with benches, plants and and a wishing well.

"We must never forget this nightmare and the lives that were lost," he said.

Mr Anderson previously set up a food bank and helped provide PPE for care homes during England's first lockdown.

He said: "Many people don't have gardens or a place to go to or even someone to talk to.

"Anyone is welcome to come along. We can give you a cup of tea and we will post photographs every week.

"We need to remember what happened. Not just the deaths, but the way they community came together."

image copyrightJames Anderson
image captionThe memorial garden is open to the public

People are also urged to plant their own flowers or trees in memory of their loved ones.

Two years ago Mr Anderson's act of kindness for a a 91-year-old woman with leukaemia went viral on social media.

The woman's daughter posted his receipt which stated she would not be charged "under any circumstances" for a new boiler.

image copyrightJames Anderson/PA
image captionJames Anderson said people needed a space to reflect

Former refuse collector Mr Anderson has been running Depher - Disabled & Elderly Plumbing and Heating Emergency Repair - as a not-for-profit plumbing company since March 2017.

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