|Public Memorial To Celebrate The Life Of Alice|
An opportunity for the Gross family to thank the local community
The parents of Alice Gross will thank the local community as well as the emergency services for the help and support they have received over the last two months at a public memorial ceremony to be held at Greenford Hall on Sunday (2nd November).
Alice disappeared on 28th August whilst walking by the Grand Union canal - her body was found on September 30th in the River Brent. Prime suspect Arnis Zalkalns was found hanged in Boston Manor Park earlier this month.
Sunday's memorial will be led by Caroline Black, a humanist celebrant, and will include music, poetry and speeches.
Alice's parents are particularly keen that those who printed, distributed and put up posters, the army of ‘ribbon fairies’ who tied yellow ribbons of hope across the borough, and those who have tended the flowers at Hanwell Clock Tower have the opportunity to attend.
In addition, the family would like the organisers of the Ealing Half Marathon to attend after they gave 6,000 runners yellow ribbons to wear during the race. The same invitation has been made to representatives of sporting clubs, including Hanwell Town FC, Hanwell RFC, Brentford FC, Ealing RFC, Chelsea FC and QPR FC.
Alice's family has asked that no further flowers, or other tributes, are left at Hanwell Clock Tower because displays will be removed from Monday, 3 November.
The family have set up a tribute page with Youth Music, a charity that supports music projects for disadvantaged children, in memory of Alice's love of music. Donations in memory of Alice can be made at alice.poppymadeleine.gross.muchloved.com/ More than £8,000 has already been raised.
A statement released by Alice's family last week said: "We would like to thank everyone for being so kind and supportive. We have been moved by the depth of sympathy and compassion around us, not only from close family and friends but also from the local community.
"A tribute and donation page has been set up in Alice's memory with Youth Music. We feel this is a fitting tribute to our daughter Alice. She loved music and music making and would have wanted other children to experience this joy."
Condolence books will remain open at Ealing Town Hall and Hanwell Library until Saturday, 1 November.
Councillor Julian Bell, leader of Ealing Council, said: "The impact of Alice's disappearance and death has been felt by the whole community but of course most greatly by her family.
"I am very pleased that the community has been given this opportunity to come together to take part in this ceremony, which is intended to be a celebration of Alice's life.
"Throughout these terrible weeks, the Gross family has shown tremendous dignity under the most tragic circumstances imaginable. I am sure that, as a community, we can continue to support them whilst also respecting their need to grieve in private for Alice."
There is limited parking near Greenford Hall and people wishing to attend are advised to come by public transport.
Greenford Hall has a maximum capacity of 500 people. The ceremony will start at 11am with doors opening at 10.30am. It is expected to last one hour.
29th October 2014