Barry Blandford Way
A former Mayor of Tower Hamlets has been honoured by having a new street named after him.
Barry Blandford, who passed away in 2011, was a councillor for Lansbury ward for ten years until 1994 and is credited with raising thousands of pounds for local charities.
Fittingly, Barry's children and grandchildren (above centre) unveiled the borough's newest street - Barry Blandford Way - the day before Father's Day on 16 June. The street naming comes five years after two Bow residents – Eileen Groves and Betty Bristow – started a campaign for the borough to mark Barry’s contribution locally.
Tracy Cunningham, Barry’s daughter (in red jacket, above) gave an emotional speech at the event which was held by Peabody to open the new street. She said: "We feel extremely proud of our Dad and the work he has undertaken locally. Naming a street after him is a real privilege and a long lasting testament to the work Dad has undertaken here. We hope the residents will be very happy in their new homes here and will at least know a little bit of the history of their new street name.
The street naming was proposed and agreed by Tower Hamlets Mayor, John Biggs (above left) and Peabody to mark the completion of more than 400 new homes next to Prospect Park.
Mayor John Biggs (third left above) said: "Barry was an excellent community activist and councillor. I was proud to have known him and delighted to be able to honour him today by opening this street." The campaign was also backed by Poplar and Limehouse MP, Jim Fitzpatrick (far left above) who said: "Barry Blandford worked hard for his community and it's appropriate that he will be remembered in this way for his enormous contribution."
Eileen Groves, who initiated the street naming request in 2013 with her friend Betty Bristow who has sadly since passed away, said: "Barry was a real community champion who did so much for local people. That's why Betty and I campaigned long and hard to have a street named after him, with the support of Jim Fitzpatrick MP. It's a shame Betty is no longer with us to see this finally happen, but I know she would be so proud. Today is a special and proud day for Barry’s family, friends and all those that knew him."
Brendan Sarsfield (far right in top image), Chief Executive of Peabody said:
"It's wonderful to see so many residents enjoying their new homes and the great open spaces at Devons Road. We're very proud to play our part in honouring Barry Blandford, who was dedicated to serving the community.
More about Barry Blandford
Barry was awarded Freedom of the City of London in 1992 in recognition of his achievements as Mayor and Councillor, and in 2001 and 2007 he received Tower Hamlets Civic Award for his outstanding service to the community. The importance of his voluntary work led his family to set up an Age UK East London annual Barry Blandford Volunteer of the Year award.
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