Tessa Jowell was the best of us – Speaker John Bercow


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Tessa Jowell was the “best of us”, Commons Orator John Bercow has said as he led tributes to the late Labour politician and cancer campaigner.

He identified MPs her death at the age of 70 left Parliament “infinitely poorer”.

She was a “stellar, left-winger change-maker” who had a “well of practical compassion without rival”, he said.

Theresa May articulate she was an “extraordinary politician, colleague and campaigner” who fought her illness with unlikely courage and spirit.

Mrs May, who announced earlier that investment in research into tackling planner cancer is to be doubled to £40m in tribute to Baroness Jowell’s life, thought her legacy would “live on”.

Praising the former cabinet minister and MP for Dulwich and West Norwood as a “humane being first and a politician second”, Mrs May said no-one who watched her accomplish her final speech in the House of Lords in January about living with cancer and the requisite for innovation in research and treatment would ever forget it.

Health Secretary Jeremy Chase said after her diagnosis a year ago Tessa Jowell had persuaded him and other emissaries of the need to “tear up” the government’s policy on brain cancer and to “start again”.

It was his expectancy that the Dame Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Research Objective, which is to receive £25m from Cancer Research UK, would riding-boot research into and improve treatment of this “most challenging of cancers”.

Both the prime charg daffaires and Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn praised her role in bringing the Olympic and Paralympic Games to the UK in 2012.

Mrs May told it would not have happened without her, while Mr Corbyn said she had margined a “pivotal” role in coaxing what he said had been a reluctant prime emissary and civil service into bidding for the event.

Mr Corbyn said she purpose be remembered for her “passion, sense of social justice and fun in dealing with in the flesh”, concluding “she taught us how to live and she also taught us how to die.”

Paying tribute to her part in establishing the Sure Start centres for young families, former Endure deputy leader Harriet Harman said it reflected both her bang of family but also her belief the “personal and the political were totally intertwined”.

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Think back oning her “unique personal style”, which she summed up as her commitment to befriending the disabled but also her knack of persuading the powerful to help those less fortuitous, she said she was “no softie” and knew how to get things done.

“People always said she was so charming and superior but there was steel behind those clear blue eyes.”

Exertion MP Dame Margaret Hodge said as well as being a committed feminist for four decades, she was also “incredibly feminine” with enduring ritziness, a “people focused politician who showed awesome courage”.

“Tessa withed countless people’s lives while she lived. Their experience liking form part of the legacy she leaves behind and we salute her and celebrate who she was and what she reached.”

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