South East Wales

Thalidomide memorial unveiled in Cathays Park, Cardiff

Thalidomide memorial Cardiff

A memorial to those affected by the thalidomide drug scandal has been unveiled in Cardiff.

Thousands of babies worldwide were born with deformities in the 1960s after the drug was given to pregnant women to combat morning sickness.

Thalidomide-impaired people, their families and supporters attended the unveiling in the city's Cathays Park.

It follows a seven-year battle by campaigners to establish a permanent memorial made of Welsh stone.

Lead campaigner Rosie Moriarty-Simmonds said: "After seven years of campaigning and persuasion, we are delighted that the memorial will be sited in the heart of Cardiff's Civic Centre, in the shadow of the National War Memorial, the City Hall and the Welsh Office.

"It is a fitting location to remember all those who have been and continue to be affected by a medical disaster which, but for the desire for profit, should never have happened."

Image caption Rosie Moriarty-Simmonds: "It's fitting that a city which does so much to recognise the importance of diversity and equality will now be an integral part of the thalidomide story."

People travelled from all over the country to attend the memorial.

Geraldine Freeman, from Swindon, said: "It's important to remember those that have gone, and our parents that are no longer with us, to know that we are going to be remembered."

Jacqueline Harper, from Wakefield, said: "It's for the people that have lost their babies and what we went through when we were little. It's a reminder of who we are today.

"It's emotional with everyone here - it's puts everything into perspective, that there's something here so that what happened is never forgotten."

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