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Tower Hamlets pauses to pay tribute and celebrate a community's response to Covid-19

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Left-to-right: Cllr Rachel Blake, Ward Member for Bow East; Cllr Mohammed Ahbab Hossain, Speaker, Tower Hamlets Council; Mayor John Biggs; Cllr Peter Golds, Leader of the Conservative Group, and; Rushanara Ali, MP for Bethnal Green & Bow.

From Monday 18 October, a series of public events began across Tower Hamlets paying tribute to those who have died of Covid-19 and celebrating the response of residents and partners, and the strength of the community.

Memorial events began in Victoria Park, where frontline staff including the NHS, Covid Champions, Rushanara Ali MP, volunteers and the Tower Hamlets’ inter-faith forum were invited to share their personal stories and talk about their contribution to the response.

This was followed by a tree planting and memorial plaque, outside of the Victoria Park Hub, intended to be a lasting memorial. Residents are invited to attend their nearest park for tree plantings, taking place across the borough all week, where they can mark the pandemic with a minute silence.

Mayor of Tower Hamlets, John Biggs, said:

“We know the pandemic is far from over but it is important to reflect on the impact of the virus and the immediate impact on, and response from, our community.

“I’m inspired by the way our community has rallied together and the support that’s been extended by so many to those in need of help.

“As we often learn, in the hardest times, we see the best of the human spirit and our residents and partners in Tower Hamlets continue to exemplify this.”

Rushanara Ali MP, Member of Parliament for Bethnal Green and Bow, said:

"It was a privilege to speak at Tower Hamlets Partnership event paying tribute to all those who have passed away from Covid-19.

"I am proud of how our community has come together to support one another throughout the pandemic. I am grateful to all those who have worked tirelessly to vaccinate the population of Tower Hamlets, from the GPs and Royal London Hospital, to Queen Mary University, Tower Hamlets Council, and community and faith-based organisations.

"As we enter winter, it is critical that we do not let our guard down and are vigilant against the threat that Covid-19 continues to pose."

The Speaker of the Council, Councillor Mohammed Ahbab Hossain, said:

“We are hosting a series of events right across the borough where we will be marking the impact of the pandemic and celebrating the response of residents and partners, and the strength of our community.

“As a community we have stood shoulder to shoulder to support one another through extremely difficult times, and it’s important that we pause to remember the huge impact of the pandemic on us all.”

St George’s Town Hall in Shadwell is being lit up in blue all week, with partners including Queen Mary University of London, who lit up the Queen’s Building, joining in to remember those who have died.

Visit the website www.towerhamlets.gov.uk/thremembers to learn more and discover your nearest tree planting.

Events take place all week, up to Friday 22 October. Residents and partners can share their own tributes too using the hashtag #THRemembers on social media.

Everyone is invited to add their memories and experience of Covid-19 to the borough’s archive, a project started in June 2020 which closes at midnight on 31 December 2021.

To take part, visit https://talk.towerhamlets.gov.uk/coronavirus-collection and add your experience.

Residents can also leave tributes to remember and celebrate the lives of family members, friends and colleagues lost in the pandemic on the council website.

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For more information about this release contact the London Borough of Tower Hamlets communications team on 020 7364 4389 or email communications@towerhamlets.gov.uk.

Posted on Tuesday 19th October 2021