A ‘Tree of Life’ is to take root in the grounds of Rotherham Hospice - thanks to the generosity of a sculptor and local firms.
The work of art, which will be built of stainless steel, weighs over one and a half tonnes and stands three metres high and almost four metres wide, is in the process of being created by renowned Derbyshire sculptor, Steve Mehdi.
The sculptor, who has also been commissioned to create the 30 metre high Yorkshire Man of Steel sculpture to stand on the site of the M1 motorway at Kimberworth, was offered free materials for the Tree of Life from companies including Outokumpu, Maher Ltd, Newburgh Engineering, JF Finnegan and Hanna Reed.
Once the trunk and branches are in place members of the public will be able to pay for stainless steel leaves to be added as a tribute to loved ones.
Businesses will be able to sponsor messages.
Mr Mehdi said: “I know how hard the hospice team work and it amazes me that they raise so much money.
“I was determined to deliver the Tree of Life for free and I’m especially proud that we achieved this with the help of some very generous local companies. Their generosity, expertise and time have made this project possible.
“I’m thrilled we can now look forward to completing this wonderful project and provide the hospice with a future income for generations to come.”
Colin Cawood-Campbell, the hospice’s head of fundraising, said: “For a long time we have wanted a special commemorative artwork within the hospice grounds which would enable our patients’ families to remember their loved ones.”
The hospice needs to raise £5 million a year to operate.