In June 1997 the world was introduced to, and fell in love with, a young orphan that lived in a small cupboard under the stairs. Almost immediately the Harry Potter books took the world by storm; children and adults all over the world queued for hours to get their hands on the Harry Potter books for years to come.
We all know the story: Mistreated by his family, Harry was whisked away to the wonderful wizarding world of Hogwarts and we were captivated by the delights and devastation that he encountered during his epic feud with “He who shall not be named”. During the books, Harry lost loved ones but most importantly found a family and friends that he would never have had the opportunity to if his circumstances had not changed.
Unfortunately, not all orphans get to experience the love that Harry found and it’s only through these books that many parentless children learned to escape their dire circumstances all over the world.
J.K Rowling, the author of Harry Potter, become deeply involved in charities and orphanages all over the world in order to try and improve their lives.
Lumos is a charity that she founded to set about the change in finding every child a loving home by 2050. The name Lumos is actually a light-giving spell in the Harry Potter books and Rowling used the name to shed light on the plight of orphans in institutions all over.
From October the 18th walkway between Millennium Bridge and St Paul’s Cathedral, Peter’s Hill, will be given a “Wizarding World makeover” when nine massive wands are installed to increase publicity to the charity that is so close to Rowling’s heart.
Each wand will be 15ft, or over 4 metres tall, and will illuminate the walkway a month before the release of the eagerly anticipated second installation of the Fantastic Beasts movies. The wands belong to Newt Scamander and the bevvy of much-loved characters found in the movies and London residents can look forward to a little bit of magic making waves on their streets soon.
The installation, called Fantastic Beasts: Wizarding World Supports London, has been developed and created between Lumos as part of the famous City of London Arts Initiative for public art.
Josh Berger, president and managing director of Warner Bros Entertainment UK, Eire & Spain, and president of Harry Potter global franchise development, said: “We are thrilled to partner with Lumos on this landmark installation, which is sure to delight fans and the tens of thousands of commuters and tourists passing through Peter’s Hill each day.
London has played a huge role in the on-screen legacy of the Wizarding World, from King’s Cross Station to Millennium Bridge, not to mention the nearby Warner Bros Studios Leavesden – which has housed countless iconic sets across all 10 films and nearly two decades – providing a major boost to the UK film industry.”
Mr Berger added that the initiative “is emblematic of this unique relationship, celebrating the magic of Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts here in London while raising awareness for the vital work being done by Lumos on behalf of some of the world’s most vulnerable children.”
This beautiful tribute is something that people all over the UK will flock to and is an amazing accolade to the books that have captured our imaginations for the past two decades.
More importantly, however, it highlights the struggles and injustices that orphans all over the world are facing and it gives them the hope that they too will be swept up into a world of magic, love, friendship and family.