The St Petersburg Siege Memorial (a Monument to the Defenders of Leningrad) commemorates the hardship that Leningrad‘s (the previous name of St Petersburg) citizens endured during the blockade which lasted 900 days (1941-1943) and took away about 1.5 million lives. Paid for by public donations, the monument was unveiled in 1975. The most striking part of the memorial are the larger-than–life blackened bronze tableaux of partisans, salvage workers, nurses, and other citizens, facing south towards the enemy. The St Petersburg Siege Memorial was constructed on a truly grand scale, it was designed to be viewed from a distance or from a passing vehicle (it’s on the main road to and from the airport). In the subterranean memorial hall are scattered relics from the siege, set in heavy marble sarcophagi, including a violin that was used in a performance of Shostakovich‘s Seventh Symphony during the Blockade. A seven minute documentary film that vividly depicts the hardships and horrors of the time will be shown to you as well.