Search

Powerful anti-knife crime exhibition is murdered Islington teenager Ben Kinsella’s legacy

07:45 30 September 2012

Ben

Ben's sister Brooke, father George and mother Deborah, with his headteacher at Holloway School, Bob Hamlyn

Dieter Perry

The family of knife victim Ben Kinsella have opened a powerful exhibition which they say stands as the murdered teenager’s “legacy”.

Ben’s sister Brooke, the former EastEnders star, his parents George and Deborah and the charity set up in his memory have launched a show designed to help steer schoolchildren away from knife and gang crime.

Titled The Ben Kinsella Trust Knife Crime Awareness Exhibition, it is based at City North in Fonthill Road, Finsbury Park. It is hoped it will make a strong impression on those who might be tempted to pick up a weapon.

On an emotional evening at the launch last Wednesday, Brooke, who became a prominent campaigner following her 16-year-old brother’s death in 2008, spoke of her hopes for what has been years in the making.

The MBE recipient, 29, said: “Basically this is Ben’s legacy. We have worked on this for four years since we lost Ben. We set up the trust but we didn’t want to rush.

“Our aims are education and prevention. We think you need to get in as early as possible to show kids the consequences.

“We hope that if a young person who comes here ever gets to the point where they think about picking up that knife, they will think back to what they have seen and make a different choice.”

Many primary and secondary schools in Islington are already signed up for tours, with 36 Year Five children from New North Academy in Popham Road, Islington, the first to visit.

It runs until March and is due to welcome more than 300 children a week – aged from nine to 16.

George said: “It’s a legacy for our son Ben’s murder. We hope it will change kids’ minds when carrying knives and dangerous weapons.”

Youngsters are taken through a series of rooms featuring artwork by Ben, a Holloway School pupil who was an aspiring graphic designer, stories from people who have been affected by knife crime, and even a remarkable piece of creative writing by Ben imagining his own knife death written just months before he died.

The centrepiece is a cinema room where a film intersperses the attack in New North Road, Holloway, taken from CCTV, with Ben’s family speaking openly about their loss and the moment when they learned he had been stabbed.

Mr Kinsella added: “It’s very hard to see the exhibition. Every time any of our family walk around, it brings it back as if it was yesterday.”

Visitors are also ushered into a mock-up of a cell where an actor plays a young man locked up on “joint enterprise” grounds – simply because he was with his “mates” when they stabbed someone.

Ben’s mother Deborah said: “It’s very emotional, we have all been working hard for the last three years. We believe Ben left us a legacy to help keep other children safe.”

0 comments

Latest News Stories

Yesterday, 17:25
Islington Council: 'Government plans could be destructive'

Town hall fears ‘destructive’ effect of extending Right To Buy scheme

Yesterday, 16:17
Islington Town Hall

ICO finds fault with some of town hall’s data practices but say holes in system are being rectified

Yesterday, 15:43
How the synagogue looked in 1950

Building was Jewish place of worship for nine decades from 1868

Yesterday, 14:52
Gas gun found in lift shaft in Canonbury, Met Police

A man who hid a gun in the lift shaft of a Canonbury building has been given a suspended sentence.

Most read news

Competitions

The sell out 2014 event 32 Londoners, returns to the Coca-Cola London Eye!

The Coca-Cola London Eye is proud to announce that 32 Londoners will be returning this June, following last year’s sell out event. The event will feature 32 talks, in each of the London Eye’s 32 capsules on 32 extraordinary Londoners.

You could take in stunning views of London over brunch at the Sky Garden

Celebrate lighter, brighter days with the chance of winning an indulgent brunch for two with a bottle of bubbles at Darwin, the cool and casual brasserie 36 floors up at Sky Garden.

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Islington Gazette e-edition today E-edition
Family Notices 24


Our trusted business finder