A swarm of Mancunians are being inked with city symbol for crowdfunding appeal
Strong, hard working, industrious, cooperative, a survivor – the worker bee has been a symbol of Manchester's resilience and community for centuries.
Originally incorporated into the city coat of arms in 1842 - when the mills and factories of Manchester's revolutionary textile trade oft resembled hives - bees cover the arms' globe because the city's industry, its scientific achievements, and its political credo of Free Trade, had global influence.
The bee also represents the city's togetherness, its solidarity, and following Monday's terror attack at Manchester Arena - which tragically killed 22 and injured up to 120 more - never has this symbol seemed more relevant.
In face of such an inconceivable tragedy, the people of Manchester pulled together as a swarm with almost instinctive acts of altruism, whether it be the queues outside blood banks, residents offering up free beds, or the dozens of fundraisers which have so far topped £3m.
Monies raised from the bee tattoos will be donated to victims and their families
Now, as the city continues to grieve, some have found solace in the bee once more, seeking to permanently ink it onto their skin in tribute to the victims of Monday's bombing and as a defiant show of solidarity.
A Manchester-based tattoo collective are offering bee tattoos to customers for £50 over the upcoming Bank Holiday weekend, with funds raised being donated to victims and their families through a crowdfunding appeal.
Sam Barker, a tattoo artist from Stalybridge, first came up with the idea after watching the tragedy play out this week, and now many other tattooists across the region and beyond are following suit.
Chorlton's Sacred Art on Barlow Moor Road will open from 10am on Sunday 28 May to begin tattooing on a first come, first served basis. Other parlours such as Studio Inkwell in Stockport and Dragonsclaw Body Art in Altrincham have joined in, while others as far as Bournemouth, the Costa Blanca and even Australia are also said to be taking part.
Here's a few of our favourites so far...
3 manchester bees from today(writing was extra!) had fun doing them, roll on the rest of the hive 😊 #manchestertattoo #manchestertattooappeal #manchester #manchesterbee #mancheseterbeetattoo #altrinchamtattoo #altrincham #thismortalcoiltattoogallery
A post shared by Matthew Wilkins (@matthewwilkinstattoo) on
Just so I don't have to keep retyping the same thing over and over here's how the bee fun will happen. I'll be posting the flash sheet on Friday, the first person that messages me directly for each design gets it. I won't just be doing one day so you'll be able to book in any day that you can make it. All designs will be an exact size, no enlarging. They will be priced between £40-£60. Hope that covers everything, so keep your eyes peeled on Friday for the post
A post shared by Hannah Howells (@kikilee22) on
One from a while back that seems pretty fitting right now. Proud to be a tattooist and growing up in Manchester it's overwhelming to see the acts of kindness, and offers of help from everyone today. A little goes a long way. There are still studios with spaces on their fundraising events, look for Manchester Tattoo Appeal on Facebook. 💗🐝 #manchesterbee #Manchester #quick#Bury #manchestertattooappeal @quickdrawtattoo_bury
A post shared by Emma Mowbray (@mowbles) on
Very proud of my husband doing his part in light of the Manchester Arena attack and joining the #manchestertattooappeal and tattooing Manchester Bees for £50 each. Absolutely ALL proceeds are donated and go to the victims of this horrible attack. Many, many artists around Manchester are doing the same, and it's incredible <3 📸 photo by @boredstiff #manchester #mcr #wearemanchester #manchesterink #manchesterbee #manchesterbeetattoo
A post shared by Sophie May Leicester (@sophiemaycheets) on
Start of raising money for the victims of Manchester bombings, tattoo artists are going to raise a damn lot of money through this, love how everyone has come together, gives you a very proud warm feeling inside #manchester #manchesterbeetattoo #raisemoney #tattoo #manchesterbombing #love
A post shared by Jack Cooper (@cooper_1_9_9_7) on