Black History Month - Black People in Britain before the Windrush

5th October 2014

Black History Month - Black People in Britain before the Windrush

As featured in our October edition of Palmers Green & Southgate LIFE magazine

Black People in Britain before the Windrush

The history and achievements of black people in Britain will be celebrated on the 1 November, at Trinity at Bowes Methodist Church, when internationally renowned scholar, Dr. Hakim Adi, will address an audience from diverse communities to share centuries of Black 'Hidden' Histories in Britain, as part of this year’s Black History season organised by the Enfield Caribbean Association (ECA).

The event will be varied with the unique voice of poet in 'flux', Zena Edwards and special guests providing performance poetry and gospel, to complete what is Enfield's Black History Month (BHM) Closing Ceremony, with the Deputy Mayor.

Established in 1986, the ECA works to ensure that Enfield's Caribbean Community is fully informed about services it needs, including advocacy, befriending, support, as well as social and cultural activities. Founded by a small group of like-minded individuals, the Association has contributed to many local initiatives, including a campaign to mark the bicentenary of the 1807 Abolition of the North Atlantic Slave trade with the commemorative plaques now in place at Enfield Civic Centre, Edmonton Library and Community House.

Currently supporting elderly residents through drop-in sessions, exercise classes, day trips and a weekly luncheon club, the ECA is expanding to offer assistance to younger residents, while continuing to challenge misconceptions of black people. Its contribution to this year’s BHM will be no exception.

Although histories of Black people in Britain often start in 1948 with the arrival of the Windrush and its passengers from the Caribbean, the presence of people of African origin in Britain dates back almost 2000 years. In Roman times Britain was even governed by the ‘African Emperor’ Septimius Severus, who was born in what is today Libya and died in the city of York in 211. Septimius, was not the only African ruler of Britain and recent discoveries have found evidence of many other Africans living in Britain during Roman times.

The history of Africans in Britain is often omitted from the history we learn at school or that we see presented in the media, but even that is starting to change as seen in the recent film Belle about the life of Dido Elizabeth Belle Lindsay, a black woman living amongst the aristocracy in the 18th century.

The presentation by historian and writer Hakim Adi will provide an illustrated outline of this 2000 year history, focusing in particular on some of the key personalities from the 16th century to the early 20th century. During that period Africans and those of African origin have had many occupations, from musician to politician, had to struggle to overcome many obstacles, and have made major and notable contributions to Britain’s history.

Saturday 1 November 2014

6:00pm - 10:00pm

Trinity at Bowes Methodist Church

Junction North Circular Road and Palmerston Road, N22 8RA

Tickets: Adults £10/8 concessions, Child £3, Family tickets available on request.

Entry includes freshly prepared Caribbean refreshments

Contact: 020 8373 6352