Tower Hamlets joins the nation to pay tribute to murdered MP Jo Cox
PUBLISHED: 11:58 20 June 2017 | UPDATED: 12:24 20 June 2017
The nation paid homage on the first anniversary at the weekend of MP Jo Cox's murder.
The ‘Great Together’ events up and down the country kicked off on Friday with the sounding of ships’ horns on the Thames and a small memorial service by her neighbours at Wapping Peace Park.
Jo’s message to Parliament when she was first elected an MP in 2015—that people having more in common than anything which separates them—was reflected in speeches by MPs Jim Fitzpatrick and Rushanara Ali.
Also addressing the candle vigil was one of her neighbours, Tower Hamlets Mayor John Biggs.
“You can condemn people and recognise the evil of what happened,” he told the Advertiser “But you can also find something positive in it.
“We should not be drowned by the negative, the hatred and the wickedness.Instead, we should remember the positive things Jo did.”
The people of Wapping want to see an annual event commemorating Jo’s legacy of peace and unity.
Gavin Starks, a neighbour at Hermitage Moorings co-operative where Jo lived with husband Brendon and two children in their houseboat, said: “Brendan wanted us to come together to counter all the things in the past year that have sought to divide us.”
An all-day public picnic in Victoria Park on Sunday with stage entertainment and family activity arranged by the Jo Cox Foundation.
Other events along the Thames waterfront from Tower Hill to Poplar included a special Sunday service at All Hallows-by-the-Tower and a community picnic at families at Matilda House by St Katharine Docks with new friendships forged in the spirit of Jo’s legacy of peace.
Community picnics were held at Wapping Gardens by St Patrick’s RC church, with a performance by English Martyrs school choir, while canal-side family activities were staged at Tobacco Dock in the former London Docks with entertainment pirate entertainment for children, performances by Clerkenwell Ballet and a pop-up cocktail bar for adults.
The 400-year-old Prospect of Whitby tavern at the far end of the Wapping waterfront, had special sessions with entertainment. Nearby, Sister Christine Frost’s Neighbours In Poplar charity had a community picnic at St Mathias church hall.