Monday, 14 May 2012

Pete Pope

Posted from local blogger Transpontine Follow the link for the full article

"Pete Pope:
Well-known Deptford community activist Pete Pope died last Friday. He had been ill for some time with cancer. I met Pete a few years ago when he and I were involved with others (including the also departed Paul Hendrich) in planning the Lewisham '77 events to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the anti-National Front protests in the area. Various meetings took place in the Marquis of Granby.

Others who knew him well will doubtless have lots of stories to tell. He was particularly active around housing and regeneration issues in the Deptford area, including the campaign against Lewisham Council evicting tenants and selling off the Aragon Tower on the Pepys Estate to private developers (the sale went ahead, with the tower later featured in the BBC documentary The Tower). In fact Pete's face is one of those staring out to the Thames from the Wall of Ancestors sculpture at the base of the Aragon Tower. 

Pete Pope
The sculpture by Martin Bond was first unveiled in 1997, but was recast and repositioned in 2006. It features local  community faces from the time as well as historical figures associated with Deptford. Pete is the face in the top left,  with Tony O'Leary to his right. Below Pete is Shirley Steward and next to her is Grinling Gibbons. The other panel (not pictured) also includes Olaudah Equiano and Catherine of Aragon, among others.
 Pete was also involved with Convoys Opportunity (along with Deptford Misc blogger Bill Ellson and others), campaigning against turning the Convoys Wharf site into a luxury housing development. While their specific proposal for a cruise liner terminal on the site came to nothing (though something similar is now planned for Greenwich peninsula), the questions they raised about using that site for the benefit of the community and acknowledging its maritime history are still very pertinent."

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