Centre for Regional and Local History

Len Garrison MA Scholarship in Black British History

The Centre for Regional and Local History (CRLH) is partnering with Black Cultural Archive (BCA) to offer three MA studentships to eligible students in honour CRLH alumnus and BCA founder, Len Garrison.

The studentships will be offered for the 2024-25 academic year and will enable three students to complete the History (Local History) MA, including a semester-long placement at Black Cultural Archives - 1 Windrush Square, Brixton London.

The Scholarship covers student tuition fees in full and includes a small bursary to cover travel and subsistence costs for the placement at BCA.

Lenford Alphonso (Len) Garrison (1943-2003) was a British-Jamaican educator, historian, and community activist who made significant contributions to documenting and preserving the history of Black British people. He pursued his Master’s education at the University of Leicester, where he studied for a Master's degree in Local History. This academic background played a crucial role in shaping his approach to heritage and archival work. Garrison co-founded Black Cultural Archives (BCA) in 1981, the UK's leading institution dedicated to collecting, preserving, and celebrating the histories of people of African and Caribbean descent in Britain. Under his guidance, BCA amassed a vast collection of photographs, documents, and oral histories, providing an invaluable resource for research and education. His work at BCA was instrumental in ensuring that the contributions and experiences of Black Britons were recognized and recorded for future generations.

The focus for these studentships in Black British local history aligns with the University of Leicester's priorities of equity, diversity, and inclusion which include a commitment to improve the ethnic diversity of those in academic roles and progressing in academic careers. The studentships, offering a small bursary and travel expenses, make Master’s study accessible to those who might not afford it otherwise. This investment supports the strategic vision of CRLH (formerly the Centre for English Local History) to develop diverse approaches to regional and local history, including research into Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic histories, and rural racism, aiming to decolonize UK history.

Terms and conditions (UK students)

The Len Garrison MA Scholarship in Black British History is available to UK (Home) applicants only.


Any UK student who has applied to the University of Leicester and who holds an offer to study with us on a full-time History (Local History) MA course starting in September 2024 is eligible to apply for the studentship. You must hold an offer for History (Local History) MA prior to submitting your application for the scholarship.

In recognition of the under-representation of Black students at Postgraduate Taught level, these scholarships will be ring fenced for suitable qualified Black applicants.

Candidates must self-identify as belonging to Black Minority Ethnic background, which includes:

  • Black or Black British – African
  • Black or Black British – Caribbean
  • Mixed Black background
  • Other Black background

Timelines and deadlines

The official submission period will open from 8 July 2024 to 5 August 2024.

Entries need to be formally submitted to Dr Angela Muir (am1074@leicester.ac.uk). Entrants should provide a short paragraph about themselves, their intended area of research and why they have applied for the scholarship. 

The scholarship is for 2024 entry only. If you defer to 2025, you will need to view our range of scholarships available for 2025 entry later in the year once they are confirmed.

About the scholarship

There are 3 x scholarships available which cover:

  • Tuition fee for the programme (UK students Home fees only)
  • Stipend of £6,000
  • A small bursary to cover travel expenses and subsistence costs during the placement at BCA of £2,000

Successful students will take the three existing modules on the History (Local History) MA. Their fourth module will be an existing heritage placement module, which is open to all History MA students. Scholarship students will take up their placement at BCA, and will undertake research and related tasks under the guidance of archival staff at BCA. Work undertaken through the placement will serve as the basis of students’ dissertations on Black British history.

In the event that you transfer from the course, or suspend your period of study, the scholarship will discontinue.

Students may be asked to partake in and contribute to University publications and social media posts directly relating to the scholarship and History (Local History) MA programme, if they are willing.

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