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Old Granary building renamed to honour Desmond and Leah Tutu

The City is elated to announce that Council approved the proposed renaming of the Old Granary building to ‘Desmond and Leah Tutu House’ at its meeting last week. The City will, in the new year, effect the renaming during a special ceremony.

The proposal to change the name to honour and memorialise the life and work of the late Archbishop Desmond Tutu and his wife, Leah Tutu, was set in motion by the City’s Economic Growth Directorate which oversees the management of the Old Granary building.

 

The City’s Naming Committee with the support of Mayor Geordin Hill-Lewis initiated a public participation process in September, which gave residents and interested parties the opportunity to comment on the proposed renaming. The report on the outcome of this process served before Council on 7 December 2023 at its last meeting for the year.

 

‘We welcome Council’s decision and I want to thank all who participated in this process – from those who made the proposal for the name change, to the public participation unit who steered the commenting process, the Mayor for his support, and finally, Council who endorsed this decision,’ said Alderman Eddie Andrews, the City’s Deputy Mayor and Chairperson of the City’s Naming Committee.

 

The Old Granary building, situated at 11 Buitenkant Street in Zonnebloem, was originally constructed between 1808 and 1813. Over the past 200 years, it has been used as a bakery, granary, jail for women, customs house, court and police office, and Public Works offices.

 

In 2015, the Desmond and Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation co-funded the refurbishment to allow the foundation to use the space as a peace centre, archive centre, and a museum, and City of Cape Town office space.

 

‘This is an outcome that is welcomed by myself and the Economic Growth Directorate’s Strategic Assets Department who oversees management of the Old Granary building. Our vision is to carry on the legacy of Desmond and Leah Tutu who have not only made notable contributions to the political and socio-cultural identity of Cape Town and South Africa, but are global icons for virtue and fortitude of character. We will host the official renaming in the new year,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Economic Growth, Alderman James Vos.

 

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