New Blue Plaques to South Tyneside Greats
The life and work of an equality champion and charity founder is to be recognised with one of three new commemorative blue plaques being established in South Tyneside.
Shuley Alam passed away in 2020. She was the founder and CEO of Compact for Race Equality South Tyneside (Crest) as well as an inspiring role model for women and the South Shields BAME community and Trustee of the Customs House.
A Blue Plaque, being funded by the Council, will be unveiled at CREST in Fowler Street over the coming months.
It is one of three which have been agreed for 2022-2023, with privately funded plaques also set to be raised with support from the Council in honour of Sir Frank Williams and South Shields Sea Cadets.
Sir Frank Williams, who was born in South Shields and spent his early childhood in Jarrow, had a long and successful career in Formula One racing and motor sport. He died in 2021.
The South Shields Sea Cadets building, on Comical Corner, was formerly used by the Royal Navy Volunteer Reserves and was the site of the training ship HMS Satellite. The building, currently home to the Sea Scouts and Cadets, is also the location of the historical penny ferry crossing.
Councillor Joan Atkinson, Deputy Leader of South Tyneside Council with responsibility for Culture, Leisure and the Visitor Economy, said: "These special Blue Plaques honour significant people and places that have added real cultural or civic value to South Tyneside or have played a key role in helping to shape it's history and heritage to what it is today.
"We are delighted to be able to celebrate the life and work of Shuley Alam in this way and pay a lasting tribute to the incredible legacy she left behind. It is particularly fitting that we announce today (28 October) - on what would have been her 48th birthday - our intention to dedicate a blue plaque to Shuley in future.
"In raising more blue plaques across the Borough this year, we also give rightful recognition to the outstanding sporting achievements of Sir Frank Williams and the huge importance of the Sea Cadets building to the Borough's rich and proud maritime heritage."
Under South Tyneside's Blue Plaque Scheme, members of the public are invited to put forward individuals and structures to be recognised for their importance to local history and heritage.
Three plaques are agreed and installed annually, with the next round of nominations opening from May to September 2023, for the year 2024-25.
There are currently 30 blue plaques sited in locations across the Borough. Earlier this year, plaques were unveiled in honour of educator and first wife of George Orwell, Eileen O'Shaughnessy, photographer and historian, Amy Flagg and South Shields showman, Gary Gillespie Davison.
Councillor Atkinson added: "We have a rich and proud heritage in South Tyneside.
"Through the Blue Plaque Scheme we can honour the life and work of those wonderful individuals and organisations who have made a significant contribution to the Borough's culture and heritage.
"It's a popular scheme, which attracts many nominations every year, reflecting the wonderful passion and civic pride that our residents have for the Borough."
For further information about South Tyneside blue plaques visit the Council's website at www.southtyneside.gov.uk/blueplaques