FINANCIAL DISTRICT — A small Downtown park dedicated to the British lives lost on 9/11 was renamed Wednesday for Queen Elizabeth II.
The British Garden at Hanover Square, a triangular slip of greenery at Pearl and Hanover streets, is now called the Queen Elizabeth II September 11th Garden, in honor of the queen's Diamond Jubilee, the 60th anniversary of her coronation.
British dignitaries, city officials and 9/11 family members gathered in the rain-drizzled garden Wednesday afternoon for a brief ceremony that included a blessing by the Very Rev. Dr. John Hall, dean of Westminster Abbey.
"This garden gives refreshment, as a sign of hope and of growing," Hall said.
The queen visited the garden to formally open it in July 2010, when she also paid her respects at Ground Zero and addressed the United Nations General Assembly.
In addition to having a new name, the memorial garden will also now represent not just the 67 British victims of 9/11, but also those from all 54 Commonwealth countries, including Australia and Canada.
New signs mark the garden's name change, and a stone carved with the Tudor rose, a centuries-old British symbol, was recently embedded at the garden's entrance.
Charles G. Wolf, a Greenwich Village resident whose Welsh wife Katherine was killed on 9/11, said he is glad to have a space to reflect apart from the larger 9/11 Memorial at the World Trade Center site.
"It gives us a place to call home," Wolf said. "It's quiet, and it's very British."