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This Morning star says blue plaque rules ‘must change’ for Steve Wright and Paul O’Grady-Danni Scott-Entertainment – Metro

She praised her ‘beautiful’ friends.

This Morning star says blue plaque rules ‘must change’ for Steve Wright and Paul O’Grady-Danni Scott-Entertainment – Metro

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Vanessa Feltz made an emotional appeal on behalf of her late friends on This Morning when discussing the blue plaque rules.

Alison Hammond and Dermot O’Leary asked who she felt deserved a blue plaque as one at George Harrison’s childhood home was unveiled today.

The 62-year-old presenter said the restrictions should be changed that prevent Paul O’Grady and Steve Wright being honoured for quite some time.

The National Blue Plaque Scheme, run by English Heritage, allows councils to mark buildings where notable historical figures lived, died, or worked.

Rules state that the recipient of the honour must have died at least 20 years before the application is made.

Vanessa did not agree with this, stating we should be allowed to memorialise public figures immediately if public sentiment is strong enough.

Vanessa Feltz appealed for a change in rules for her friends (Picture: ITV)

Paul O’Grady won’t be able to be honoured until at least 2043 (Picture: ITV/REX/Shutterstock)

‘I love it, I absolutely love it but there is another rule they have that you can’t be commemorated with a blue plaque if you haven’t been dead for 20 years,’ she began.

‘I would just really love them to change that. I think if people are very badly missed immediately, it would be lovely if you could put up a blue plaque pretty much straight away.’

Blue plaques are placed in visible locations to indicate a building or area linked to a famous person or event.

The former Strictly star said she believed this exception should be made for her ‘beautiful, wonderful friend’ Paul, who died last year.

Vanessa wants her ‘lovely’ friend Steve Wright to be given a blue plaque now (Picture: BBC)

Notable blue plaques include Freddie Mercury, John Lennon, and Princess Diana (Picture: Karwai Tang/WireImage)

Vanessa continued: ‘I would love that and I would love that to be soon not in 20 years time.’

Alison clarified the rule, which English Heritage confirmed to it was not considering changing but confirmed that councils are not bound to this and can set their own rules.

In response to Vanessa, it added: ‘[The rule] is to help ensure that the decision about whether or not to shortlist a candidate is made with a sufficient degree of hindsight, and to give time for a figure’s reputation to sufficiently settle before they are considered.’

‘You know, also, my lovely friend and colleague Steve Wright,’ Vanessa appealed. ‘I think people would love that, don’t you?

‘They’re missed all over the country by absolutely everyone. I think that would be wonderful.’

‘Oh they’re definitely missed,’ agreed the host as Dermot added it would be ‘nice for this to happen without receding too much into the past’.

Notable Blue Plaques in London

There are over 1003 blue plaques placed around the City of London and Greater London area, with even more across the rest of the UK.

Some of the notable ones include:

Princess Diana
Freddie Mercury
John Lennon
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Peter Cushing
Emily Wilding Davison
Enid Blyton
Charlie Chaplin
Vincent Van Gogh
Sir Ernest Shackleton
George Eliot (Mary Ann Evans)
Ian Fleming
Sir Isaac Newton
Florence Nightingale
Dylan Thomas
Mary Shelley

This rule means people can only apply for anyone who died before 2004 and applications must be made before July 19.

The scheme began in London in 1866 but was expanded across the UK in 1998 under a trial and was made permanent in 2023 under the Levelling-up and Regeneration Act.

Lord Byron, the poet, was the recipient of the first ever plaque by Society of Arts in 1867 but his home was demolished in 1989.

Before the scheme extended outside of London, local councils and other organisations would erect similar plaques.

There are 177 blue plaques in Camden alone, which includes ones for Charles Darwin, Charles Dickens, and John Keats — Amy Winehouse will not be eligible under current rules until 2031.

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