People’s Choice Award 2024 Silver Longform Under £100,000

Quinns Retreat
Speak Their Name - North East Suicide Memorial Quilt

Film & Campaign Description

Our video follows the journey of the creation of the North East Speak Their Name suicide loss memorial quilt in the north east of England. Our project was led by Tracey Beadle of the charity Quinn’s Retreat and Suzanne Howes.
Both have lost children to suicide and are determined to make a difference, and bring hope, in their children’s names.

The quilt is made of 120 individual fabric squares, each crafted by those bereaved to suicide, representing and honouring their loved ones who have died. 200 people attended workshops in 2023 to create their memorials.

Our project is both a suicide prevention and postvention initiative. Suicide loss is traumatic, isolating and leaves heartbreak in its wake. We know people bereaved by suicide are at higher risk of suicide themselves. The north east has the highest suicide rate in the UK.

Our vision is that our powerful artwork will take centre stage in our region. The quilt is currently touring public places, provoking thought, being a catalyst for conversations and raising awareness about suicide. Alongside this, our quilt is bringing hope and healing to those who have lost loved ones.

Quinns Retreat

Quinn’s Retreat was founded after the death of our beautiful 17 year old daughter Quinn, sadly on 9th December 2018 Quinn took her own life. Following this we decided to make the area where we lost her into a small memorial garden. We decided to fundraise to buy a bench and to clean up the area. We raised far more in one day that we could have ever expected.

Before we lost Quinn we had planned to go away for a week over Christmas to a holiday cottage in the Peak District with my husband and Quinn’s brother Dyllon. Quinn’s funeral was on the Friday before Christmas so we didn’t know what to do about going away, Dyllon thought it would be good for us to get away from the town we live in and go somewhere that no one knew us and spend some time together as a family, so off we went on the Sunday to the holiday cottage.

While we were away we laughed and cried together about Quinny in equal measure! We remembered who she really was and it really helped us to just be together the three of us and our two little dogs Lenni and Mabel. We went out for dinner, something we wouldn’t have dared do in the town we lived in as well we just would have felt that everyone was looking at us. On that break we decided we wanted to help families who have suffered a bereavement through suicide to do the same, and so the idea of Quinn’s Retreat was born.

Sadly just ten months later on 8th October 2019 we also lost Dyllon to suicide, he was only 21, he was amazing but he just couldn’t carry the burden of grief on his shoulders any longer. I remember him telling me that it wasn’t until we lost Quinn that he realised that she was his best friend, the best friend he had ever had. I think he just needed to be with her, he was such a caring and loving person and he could not bear to think of her being alone.

We became an official Charity registered with the Charity Commission in January 2020. In February 2020 we bought our very first caravan “Quinn’s Retreat” at Barnard Castle and in 2021 we purchased our second caravan just outside of Appleby called “Dyl’s Den”