Barnet councillors are proposing to rename Hendon’s Holocaust garden in honour of humanitarian Sir Nicholas Winton, who rescued hundreds of Jewish children from Prague on the eve of the Second World War.
London mayor Sadiq Khan and his predecessor Boris Johnson both backed the idea of renaming a London street or landmark after the humble hero, who died last year, but planning laws meant that individual boroughs were best-placed to enact change.
Barnet politicians took the initiative earlier this year, after they were approached by the Raoul Wallenberg Foundation. The idea will now go to a vote at the Annual Council meeting on 24 May, following agreement by the committee.
“Renaming the Holocaust Memorial Garden in Hendon Park in Sir Nicholas Winton’s honour would seem a fitting tribute,” said Conservative Councillor Dean Cohen.
“I was approached by the Raoul Wallenberg Foundation, whose mission is to develop education programmes and public awareness campaigns based on the values of solidarity, civic courage and the ethical cornerstones of the saviours of the Holocaust,” he said. “Sir Nicholas embodied these values and his example should continue to be recognised and remembered.”
The president of the Raoul Wallenberg Foundation, itself named after a Swedish diplomat who saved thousands of Jews, earlier wrote to then-mayor Boris Johnson outlining initiatives to commemorate Winton ahead of the anniversary of his death in May.
Together with plans for a bust or statue, Johnson was asked “to consider the idea of naming a London street and/or public place after Sir Nicholas Winton” as part of an initiative identifying physical sites in Europe that gave shelter to victims of Nazism.