Former Labour cabinet minister Tessa Jowell dies aged 70

Tessa Jowell with former PM Tony Blair and Sir Charles Allen mayor of the Olympic Athletes village during London 2012

Tessa Jowell with former PM Tony Blair and Sir Charles Allen mayor of the Olympic Athletes village during London 2012

"She died peacefully at the family home near Shipston-on-Stour in Warwickshire last night, shortly after 10pm".

"With Sure Start she saw how communities would be better as a result of early intervention and support for families".

Theresa May and the health secretary, Jeremy Hunt, also announced an annual Tessa Jowell global symposium, which will host the best clinical, scientific and academic minds on brain cancer to to identify gaps, best practice and research priorities.

Conservative MP for Chatham and Aylesford, Tracey Crouch, said she was very sad to hear the news, adding: "She was respected across the political divide for her calm, polite manner".

In the summer of 2017 she was diagnosed with brain cancer, and it was in the Lords where she recently made one of parliament's most emotional speeches.

Former prime minister Tony Blair said Dame Tessa Jowell was "the most wise of counsellors, the most loyal and supportive of colleagues, and the best of friends". From councillor to cabinet Minister, her achievements were huge, including helping to bring the Olympics to London. She was surrounded by her family.

She served as MP for Dulwich and West Norwood from 1992 to 2015, featuring in both Tony Blair and Gordon Brown's cabinets and playing a large role in bringing the 2012 Olympics to London as culture secretary.

He tweeted: "She was quite simply the bravest and the best & brought magic to whatever she touched whether SureStarts, London 2012 or campaigning for those who like her were battling with incurable cancer".

"The first was she corralled the whole of the government behind the bid".




The leader of the Labour party Jeemy Corbyn said her fight to raise awareness of cancer "inspired us all".

"She absolutely believed in sport as an agent for social change - as a means for bettering people's lives and for the good it could do for people", he told BBC Radio 5 live's Sportsweek.

Leading the tributes to Dame Tessa, Mr Blair said: "She knew she was dying and yet she was prepared to give everything she had in order to help people in the future".

"The second crucial thing she did when Labour were in power was setting the structure which delivered the Games, got the organising committee correctly set up and later on in the process put the Olympic Park legacy into place".

He said: "No politician deserves greater credit for the Games".

"Tessa was a true believer in the power and inspiration of sport, for which all of us who benefited from her support and conviction will be eternally grateful. She showed unflinching tenacity in persuading the Prime Minister and the Cabinet that the Government should throw its full weight behind the bid". She was lying in Matt, his sister Jess, and their Dad's arms, as they told her that she would live forever in the centre of their souls. "I was in Singapore", she recalled.

"I will certainly never forget it - neither the day itself nor the days afterwards".

"No-one will ever forget the courage, strength and compassion for others that defined her life, shown in her incredible bravery in facing cancer and her desire to ensure that even while she suffered herself, she helped others who faced similar illnesses".

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