Arctic Monkey's mum gets names of star’s granddads engraved on Sheffield’s Heart of Steel

The mum of Arctic Monkeys’ drummer Matt Helders is to get the names of both of the Sheffield superstar’s granddads engraved on a sculpture which commemorates the fight against heart disease.

Monday, 5th August 2019, 11:31 am

Meadowhall’s ‘Heart of Steel’ - a 2.4 metres high sculpture crafted entirely from Yorkshire steel - has 150,000 spaces for people to engrave their name, or the name of a loved one, for a donation of £20.

Matt’s grandad’s names will be engraved on the sculpture on Thursday, August 1 - Yorkshire Day - when visitors will be able to sign for their own personalised engravings which will be etched on to the heart later this year.

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All the money raised will go to the BHF to help improve the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of heart and circulatory diseases, which currently affect more than seven million people in the UK.

Jill Helders, the Monkeys’ Matt’s mum, aged 59, will have the names of both her father-in-law, Kenneth Helders, and her father, Barry Foster, engraved on the heart.

Jill said: “Despite suffering his first heart attack at his 50th birthday and then going on to develop vascular dementia Kenneth lived almost to his 90th birthday.

“My dad, Barry, is from Sheffield, born and bred. He was a joiner and his father, Albert, was a steel worker.

The Heart of Steel sculpture at Meadowhall is 2.4 metres tall and weighs over a tonne

“Albert is the steelworker pictured on a famous brick mural commemorating the steel workers of Sheffield.

“It used to be on the side on Sheffield police station but it’s now been moved in order to preserve it.

“Both Kenneth and Barry were incredibly proud of everything Matt has achieved with the Arctic Monkeys.

“Sheffield is a beautiful city and Yorkshire is a beautiful county.

Jill Helders' dad Barry.

“I thought that putting both of their names on the Heart of Steel was the perfect tribute.”

Also attending will be Beverley Crossley, 57, and her father, Anthony Turner, 80, who are originally from Sheffield but now live in Barnsley.

Beverley had Anthony’s name engraved on the Heart of Steel as a Christmas present, to commemorate his heart transplant in January 2000, the first South Yorkshire heart transplant of the new millennium.

After suffering several heart attacks, Anthony underwent triple bypass surgery in 1989, spending his 50th birthday in hospital.

Jill Helders' father in law Kenneth.

Just over ten years later, Anthony was put on the transplant list and was taken in for surgery shortly after.

Nearly 20 years on from the heart transplant, Beverley said: “We’re a Yorkshire based family and Dad feels a really strong connection to the area and to the Northern General Hospital where he had his transplant.

“The transplant has given him a whole new lease of life. We always say that, although we haven’t ever won the lottery, the chances of my dad getting a transplant aged 61 were so slim, it’s almost as if we did! That’s how we think about it.”

Since being created by artist Steve Mehdi, the Heart of Steel has raised £540,000 for the BHF. To find out more visit www.bhf.org.uk/heartofsteel.

Anthony Turner at 80th Birthday.