The ‘After Life’ Plaque that was installed in partnership with Ricky Gervais and the Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) was stolen just hours after being unveiled.
It was put in Meersbrook Park by the Sheffield City Council on Thursday.
Sheffield City Council posted on their Facebook page to announce the instalment of the plaque and the bench on Thursday morning. On Thursday afternoon, they announced the plaque had been stolen.
CALM was set up to prevent lives being lost to suicide and the bench is one of 25 similar ones across the country.
The benches were inspired by the Netflix show ‘After Life’ which portrays Tony Johnson, played by Gervais, attempting to come to terms with the loss of his wife to cancer.
Nice to hear that the donated afterlife bench in Sheffield has already had it’s plaque taken. Pathetic stealing scumbags.
— 💙🦉Shelley🦉💙 (@shellbell1471) March 11, 2022
Denis Goldman, a Meersbrook resident said “I don’t think the plaque being stolen matters at all, it was an advertising plaque and the only things mentioned on it were Netflix and a TV series.”
He added that the important part of the bench, the plaque relating to the Campaign Against Living Miserably, an anti-suicide campaign, is still there.
The CALM plaque has information about the charity and a barcode that anyone can scan to get more information.
Mr Goldman went on to say that “if anything, I think dedicating a bench to a TV show, with the anti-suicide message playing second fiddle was tasteless.”
The other plaque reads: “Life can be tough but there’s always hope. Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) is by your side.”
The purpose of the bench is to encourage people to reflect, talk to others, and get things off their chest. CALM wants people to know that it is normal to have these feelings and it is okay to talk about them.
Another Facebook user wrote “The theft can not take away from either the message or the purpose of the bench. That is truly the important thing.”
The plaque is yet to be returned.