Peter Golds: Barry Blandford was an unsung hero

By Peter Golds


The funeral has taken place of one of our local unsung heroes.

Former councillor and mayor Barry Blandford recently died aged 77 and his funeral was on Friday.

He was devoted to the people of this borough, where he had lived all his life.

He left the council in 1994, but in the last 17 years he continued his public service including being a governor of the Stephen Hawking School, which caters for children with special needs.

He was active in numerous voluntary organisations on the Isle of Dogs, ranging from the Community Police Forum to the Association of Island Communities.

He knew and was respected by long term Islanders and many of the more recent residents for his humour, commitment and quiet wisdom.

He might not have been able to play rugby in recent years but he always looked forward to the rugby club's report at AIC meetings.

I will always remember his chuckle when he heard the latest match results.

While mayor, he raised thousands to alleviate floods in Bangladesh, and visited to see how this money, raised here in Tower Hamlets was spent.

■ When I wrote last time about the media I could not foretell the firestorm that was about to break.

Yes, the News Of The World behaved badly, but let us go back in time. It was a free press that uncovered the horrors of Thalidomide after cover-ups by business and government.

That, and many other scandals, would not have been revealed if our journalists were reliant on government press releases or commercial advertorials.

■ Peter Golds is Conservative councillor for Blackwall and Cubitt Town