Mural honours Oscar-winning actress and MP, Glenda Jackson

A new mural is the latest tribute to the late Oscar-winning actress Glenda Jackson.

Glenda Jackson, an Oscar-winning actress and Labour MP for 23 years, died peacefully following a brief illness on 15 June 2023 at the age of 87. The star was born in Birkenhead and her family later moved to Hoylake in west Wirral when she was a child.

The mural sits on the banks of the Mersey near the Woodside Ferry Terminal on the edge of the Woodside Business Park. Nearby is a mural to another Birkenhead legend, the late Paul O’Grady.

It depicts the late actress with her two Oscars and the House of Commons logo behind her. The artwork is the latest done by Brezaux, an artist based in Wallasey who’s been commissioned by Peel L+P to paint a number of murals in the area. 

The artist said, “The mural served as a testament to Jackson’s remarkable ability to excel in both the world of art and politics, honouring her diverse and impactful contributions.”

Bill Devereux, asset and project manager for Peel’s Wirral Waters previously said, “The Wirral Waters team are keen to see local young people involved in art projects across the area” and called Brezaux “one of North West’s most prominent street artists.”

He added, “Birkenhead is fast becoming a culturally active, vibrant place with a great future, and we hope this project, and others like it, engage local people and add to the sense of pride in the town.”

Wirral has been paying tribute to the late actress in other ways. At a meeting of all councillors on 9 October, Wirral Council unanimously gave the late actress the title of the Freedom of the Borough posthumously, the highest honour it can give. 

Other recipients of the award include the late Paul O’Grady, the 97 victims of the Hillsborough disaster, and Baron Frank Field of Birkenhead.

Jackson scooped a best actress Oscar in 1970 for Women In Love and again three years later for A Touch Of Class. She later left acting temporarily to serve as the MP for Hampstead and Highgate from 1992 to 2015 and served in Tony Blair’s government between 1997 and 1999.

After standing down in 2015 as MP, she returned to acting, winning a BAFTA for best actress in 2019 for her role in Elizabeth Is Missing which followed the story of a woman suffering from dementia. Following her death, tributes came in across the political and acting worlds.

At the meeting on 9 October, Cllr Andrew Hodson, recommending the award, said, “It should only be awarded to someone who has made an exceptional contribution to the borough and Glenda Jackson of Birkenhead is within this category.”

Wirral council leader Paul Stuart paid tribute to the late actress, adding, “Many people, myself included, have been inspired by her success story.”

Conservative group leader Cllr Jeff Green said it was “incredible to think she was born just around the corner” praising a career from “Birkenhead to Hollywood Boulevard.”

Image: Glenda Jackson mural. Credit: Brezaux

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