Latest posts by Anne Harris (see all)
- 5 Black Community Landmarks for Family Trips in the UK - December 18, 2018
Taking your family abroad is a great way to spend some quality time together. While you’re strengthening your family bonds, it’s nice to learn something about history and culture along the way.
If you’re a Black family from the US, think about going for vacations to the UK. You can see many different cultural and historical attractions that witness about the influence that the Black community has had on this country for centuries. In this guide we’ll recommend the most important landmarks for such a trip.
Cato Street, London
Cato Street is an important historical landmark that hides the story of the Cato Street Conspiracy. The central figure of this plot was William Davidson, a 19th-century fighter for the rights of Black Britons.
A well-educated man, schooled at universities in Aberdeen and Glasgow, was a revolutionary who had a plan to start an upheaval and overthrow the government. Cato Street is the place where he was arrested. Now it serves as a reminder of this pioneer in the struggle for the empowerment of Blacks in Great Britain.
Blackfriars Bridge, London
Blackfriars Bridge was the venue of one of the largest protests of London Blacks ever. It was held on March 1 1981. Triggered by the death of thirteen Black youngsters in a racist arson, in January that same year, it was a dignified and peaceful way to draw attention of the authorities.
Taking your family to this place would show them that the Blacks from the UK also fought for their rights in the 1970s and 1980s.
Nelson Mandela statue
Placed at Parliament Square in London, this nine-foot monument was erected in 2007. One of the most prominent fighters against apartheid in South Africa throughout from the 1960s to the 1990s, Mandela inspired many people in the UK to stand up for their rights and fight against discrimination.
Still, there was some controversy about the right spot for this monument. The initial suggestion was that it should be placed at Trafalgar Square, which wasn’t approved by the local council. They claimed that it would be too big for such a crowded location. Even the UK Government had to intervene and they decided that this monument was going to be unveiled at Parliament Square.
For a two-hour train ride, you can get by train from London to Bristol. This sea town in the south of England serves as a great example of a melting pot that accepts all the racial and cultural differences.
At the Bristol Museum you can learn more about African culture and the heritage of Black Britons coming from this continent. For instance, the Fabric Africa exhibition will tell you more about the role textile from Africa had in the history of Bristol and England.
Apart from the museum, the Bristol Port also has some interesting stories from the past. This is the place that welcomed thousands of Blacks, who worked as sailors, port workers, etc.
A family trip to the UK without visiting the British Museum is incomplete. While this great museum should be visited for many reasons, you should pay special attention to the African section.
One of the most beautiful artefacts in that part of the museum are the Benin Bronzes. They were made in Benin City, which was destroyed by the British forces in 1879. Luckily, they firstlooted the city, and brought these fabulous works of art to London.
Dating from the 12th century, the Benin Bronzes show that the African culture was advanced and unique before it the Europeans came to this continent. Now it seems that they’ll be returned to Nigeria, so hurry up if you want to see it.
What might be tricky about going to the British Museum is that the entire visit might last too long for your kids. That’s why you could have a London live-in nanny take care of them while you and your partner are visiting the museum.
Although they didn’t have such media coverage like the US fighters for the rights of Blacks, the UK defenders of the Black community played an important role in their emancipation. Also, Blacks contributed a lot to the development of the UK. That’s why Blacks from other parts of the world visiting the UK should pay attention to the landmarks important for the Black community there. We hope our little guide will help you get familiar with such places.
Author Bio: Anne Harris is an HR specialist working for londongoverness.com.
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