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Tessa Jowell, former Labour cabinet minister, dies aged 70

Tessa Jowell, former Labour cabinet minister, dies aged 70

Theresa May, the current British Prime Minister, said the dignity and courage with which Dame Tessa confronted her illness was "humbling" and "inspirational".

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

Former British Labour cabinet minister Tessa Jowell, a major role in securing the 2012 Olympics for London, died late Saturday aged 70, her family said on Sunday.

Ashford MP Damian Green told Kent Online: "Tessa Jowell was one of the few politicians who had respect, admiration and friendship from all sides in the House of Commons".

"I saw the forward-looking, expansive, optimistic vision of Britain that the opening ceremony represented and I thought again that this was something the bombers and their supporters would have hated - all those nations, with their different views, their different cultures, their different traditions, coming together in a spirit of peace and play", she said.

Despite being moved from the Department for Culture, Media and Sport in 2007, she retained her position as Olympics Minister throughout Labour's time in office.

Coe, who is now President of the International Association of Athletics Federations, said London 2012 would not have happened without Dame Tessa.

He said: "No politician deserves greater credit for the Games. She showed unflinching tenacity".

"And long after the Games were over, Tessa continued to fight for their legacy". Without her the sporting landscape of the United Kingdom would have looked very different, and so many other tangible legacies left dormant.

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He added: "I kind of can't quite believe she's gone".

Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair described Dame Tessa as "an inspiration to work with, and a joy to be near".

"But if they were misleading, uncaring or obfuscating she would be tougher than anyone - and forensic with it".

Sarah Lindsell, CEO of the Brain Tumour Charity, said the charity had started working with "wonderful ambassador" Dame Tessa towards the end of past year, and she praised her campaigning for cancer patients.

On May 24 2017 she had two seizures in a taxi as she made her way to a talk in east London.

Lord Blunkett said: "It will be Tessa as a person who I will remember".

"I've never seen love like I have since becoming part of their family". It summed her up - brave, wise, visionary, funny, ideological, loving, compassionate.

A mother who lost her daughter in the 7/7 attacks spoke highly of Dame Tessa Jowell for her support in the aftermath of the attack.

Sarah Lindsell, chief executive of the Brain Tumour Charity, said: "Tessa Jowell's courage and honesty in speaking about her brain tumour diagnosis, coupled with her fierce determination to improve the lives of others affected by the disease, has already brought hope to an often-forgotten community of patient and families".