‘Tessa Jowell Boulevard’ unveiled in Olympic Park
Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park’s most popular walkway has today been officially renamed ‘Tessa Jowell Boulevard’ in memory of the former Culture Secretary Baroness Jowell, who was the driving force behind the London 2012 Olympic Games.
The tree-lined boulevard is one of the most picturesque locations in the park, running through the Pleasure Gardens in the south, starting at the ArcelorMittal Orbit and passing along the waterways to Carpenters Lock in the centre of the park. New street signs have been placed along the length of the newly named boulevard.
Tessa, who died in May last year, was Labour MP for Dulwich and West Norwood from 1992 to 2015 and played a vital role in securing the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games for London.
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, joined members of Tessa’s family as the new boulevard signs along the walkway were revealed, and a memorial plaque in honour of Tessa was unveiled.
The plaque will be placed on the boulevard next to the Carousel Room and has the following inscription: ‘The Right Hon. Tessa Jowell DBE made a decisive contribution to securing and delivering the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. This plaque was erected to recognise Tessa’s efforts, her success in relation to the Games and to celebrate her life and achievements’.
The walkway was originally used as the main pedestrian plaza during the 2012 Games and was redesigned by one of the world’s leading landscape architects, James Corner Field Operations (creators of the New York High Line) and the renowned planting designer Piet Oudolf.
David Mills, Tessa’s husband, said: "Tessa was incredibly proud of the success of the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and our family are thrilled at this wonderful honour made in her memory. We are very grateful to the Mayor of London and the LLDC for this lovely gesture. "
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: "Tessa was a hugely respected figure in London and national politics and was the driving force that brought the 2012 Games to the capital. She was a friend, and someone who was as dynamic and talented as she was kind-spirited and generous.
"British politics is a poorer place without her energy and expertise and Tessa is sorely missed by family, friends and everyone who knew her. I am proud that visitors to the Park will now be reminded of her incredible legacy by this fitting memorial."
Sir Peter Hendy, chair of LLDC, said: "There is no better place to honour one of the most respected politicians in the country than in the most popular part of the Park. Tessa did more than anybody to bring the 2012 Games to London and to ensure a lasting legacy from their spectacular success."