Page 12 – Honouring boy hero Page 14 – Bye bye Boleyn Page 24 – Mayor’s Promises update The Newham Mag Issue 341 // 20 May-2 June 2016 Every fortnight


Devendra Patel – Honorary Freedom

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Devendra Patel – Honorary Freedom

Devendra came to the United Kingdom in 1961. In 1978 he started a newsagent business in Plaistow. He is respected as a champion for the community and is Immediate Past President of the London district of the National Federation of Retail Newsagents.
Newham and Essex Beagles Athletics Club – Honorary Freedom

The Beagles are one of the leading athletics clubs in Great Britain. Based at the Terence McMillan Stadium in Plaistow, 15 Olympians have worn the club’ colours including Daley Thompson, Mo Farah, and Christine Ohurougu.


To read more about the recipients visit www.newham.gov.uk/freedoms

Pages 10-11

Freedom is a noble gesture

This has been a phenomenal season for Mark Noble, the Canning Town-born captain of West Ham United. He has led a side challenging at the top of the Premier League and enjoyed a star-studded testimonial for 15 years service to the club. Now he has been awarded Freedom of the Borough of Newham.


Mark, 29, becomes the first Hammers player in the 50 municipal years since Newham was formed, to be awarded this honour and only the second sportsperson after Olympian and Stratford resident Christine Ohuruogu MBE.
He has been recognised for his distinguished service to sport and community, particularly young people. “I was overwhelmed when I was told I was being considered for the award,” he said. “I am honoured to receive it and I will do everything I can to help Newham and the place I was born and bred in, in any way I can.”

Mark grew up around East Ham, Beckton and Custom House. He went to the former Woodside School before moving to The Royal Docks Community School in Custom House. “I look back now and how it made me the person I am today,“ he said. “If I am honest I wasn’t at home a lot. I was always on the street playing football or in parks. I played football for the school team, which I loved. We got to play at Stamford Bridge and Wembley. I will never forget those times.”

Mark progressed to the West Ham United learning academy. In total he has made more than 360 appearances for the club, scoring in excess of 40 goals. He said: “I will never forget when aged 16, travelling to Wigan with the first team. I was in the squad but never going to get on the bench. I was only there to make up the numbers, but then manager Alan Pardew told me to get my kit on and warm up with the lads to get the atmosphere.
“I was warming up and I looked up to our away fans and saw one of my best friends as he walked up the stairs. I remember the shock on his face that I was on the pitch. It was quite surreal for a lad still at school.”
Mark made his debut at Upton Parkas a 17-year-old against Southend United in the League Cup. Unfortunately his father, also called Mark, missed it as he was on holiday. Mark junior said: “Dad has never lived it down because he never thought I was I was going to make my debut then. I played for 20 minutes and then had to walk home afterwards with my girlfriend Carly, who is now my wife. We walked past fans and they didn’t know who I was.”
Named club captain in 2015, Mark celebrated his testimonial in April in a game that saw many former West Ham legends return to the Boleyn Ground.
Next season the club moves to the former Olympic Stadium in Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. Mark said: “We don’t know what it will be like, but it is exciting. It won’t seem real until we turn up there for a game, go into the changing room and go out and warm up.”

Mark is being honoured for dedication to his club and his service to the community. He is currently working with former Hammers Rio Ferdinand and Bobby Zamora on a community housing project called Legacy and he is also patron of Richard House Children’s Hospice in Beckton. “I have gone to Richard House since I got into the first team,” Mark said. “I am touched not just by all the kids and the families who stay there, but the staff as well. The work they do and the patience they have is incredible. I couldn’t do it myself because I’m too much of an emotional person.”

Mark, who has twice been Hammer of the Year, is the epitome of the local boy who has done well. His message to those who want to follow in his footsteps is simple: “Whatever you want to do, just work hard and put your heart and soul into that. Be a good and respectful person and look after your community.”

Pages 12-13

VC hero parade and ceremony


Picture caption: East Ham Cenotaph

On Sunday 5 June, an annual parade honouring Victoria Cross (VC) recipient Boy, First Class, John Travers Cornwell VC (who was nicknamed Jack) will take place in East Ham. This year it will feature a special commemorative ceremony and exhibition.


Residents are invited to attend the event which starts with a parade from the Cornwell VC Cadet Centre, Vicarage Lane at 10am and finishes in the Cenotaph area, Central Park, where a commemorative stone will be laid. After the ceremony, the parade will continue on to Newham Town Hall where a Newham in the Great War exhibition and refreshments will be available.
The ceremony is part of a series of events honouring Newham’s five First World War VC recipients, with commemorations occurring near the time of the 100th anniversary of their acts of bravery.
Mayor Sir Robin Wales said: “The Victoria Cross is the highest military decoration awarded for acts of valour in the face of the enemy. The paving stones offer a lasting legacy of heroes within our community.”

Jack Cornwell VC was born on8 January 1900 in Leyton. He later moved to Manor Park where he attended Walton Road School and was a Boy Scout in the 11th East Ham Troop. At the age of 15 Jack enlisted with the Navy and after completing his basic training, was ordered to join the fleet at Rosyth in Scotland on the newly commissioned HMS Chester. A few weeks later HMS Chester was involved in the Battle of Jutland and was hit with all of Jack’s gun crew, except for him, killed.

Jack himself was severely wounded but managed to stand up and remain at his post, waiting for further orders. He was taken to Grimsby Hospital where he died on2 June 1916. He was only 16.
At first his death did not seem remarkable but after hearing about the events from the ship’s captain, the British Admiralty recognised that Jack had shown exceptional courage and so a recommendation for him to receive a posthumous VC was endorsed by King George V. On16 November 1916, Jack’s mother was presented with the medal by the King at Buckingham Palace.
Roger John Cornwell, 69, a relative of Jack’s, was named after him by his proud parents. Roger said people who are aware of Jack Cornwell often ask him if he is related and said he is proud to tell them that he is.
Jack was a cousin to Roger’s grandfather. Roger’s grandmother, who was a generation or two older than Jack, also knew him.
Roger said: “She told me a particular story about him. He was on his last shore leave before his death and he was performing magic tricks for the assembled crowd. You got the impression that he was a fairly normal boy.”
Roger is grateful that Jack’s name continues to live on in Newham and he welcomes the parade on 5 June. He also paid tribute to the Manor Park branch of the Royal British Legion which has honoured Jack’s bravery with a parade over the years.
The legacy of Jack Cornwell VC is still very much alive in Newham today. In Manor Park, there is the Jack Cornwell Community Centre in Jack Cornwell Street, and the Victoria Cross public house and Jack Cornwell VC House in Grantham Road. In Manor Park Cemetery there is Cornwell Crescent and in Vicarage Lane, East Ham, there is the Cornwell VC Cadet Centre, where the Newham Sea Cadets are based.

Residents are invited to join us at the Cenotaph in Central Park, High Street South, East Ham, for 10.15am for the laying of the commemorative stone





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