University of Leicester celebrates 75th anniversary of Empire Windrush arrival

The University of Leicester is working with the city’s Caribbean community to mark the 75th anniversary of the arrival of the Empire Windrush.

The University is holding an at the African Caribbean Centre that will celebrate the contribution of Leicester’s Caribbean Community to the life of the city.

In 1948, the ship Empire Windrush brought one of the first relatively large groups of post-war immigrants from the West Indies.

The ship's arrival has been adopted as a symbol of the generation of Commonwealth Caribbean citizens who came to live in Britain between 1948 and 1971.

The University event will feature stories of migration, work and settlement, with a particular focus on work in the NHS and other public services.

It will cover Caribbean cultural contributions, across music, dance, sport and food. It will include a focus on the denial of citizenship and the campaign for re-assertion of citizenship and belonging in response to the recent Windrush generation scandal.

The event will reflect different parts of the Caribbean and different generations’ perspectives.

Speakers from the University of Leicester will include Margaret Byron, Associate Professor of Human Geography and Maxine Chapman, lecturer in midwifery and  Laura Bee, Director of the University’s Legal Advice Clinic where law students offer free legal advice to applicants of the Windrush Compensation Scheme.

Key speakers from the Leicester Caribbean community will include

  • Elvy Morton, co-founder of the Leicester Caribbean Carnival in 1984
  • Agnes Nisbett, Sister Charles and Georgina Taylor, retired senior nursing and midwifery sisters
  • Retired and current football coaches from Highfield Rangers
  • Descendants of the migrant generation in Leicester.

Margaret Byron, who is part of the University of Leicester’s Migration Mobility and Citizenship network said: “The Migration Network seeks to recognise the very significant contribution to Leicester made by Caribbean migrants and their descendants.

“The 75th Anniversary of the arrival of HMS Empire Windrush provides us with a wonderful opportunity to celebrate the presence of Caribbean life in our city and to develop further links between our institution and this important community.”

The event will be held on Friday, 30 June between 6pm and 9pm at the African Caribbean Centre on Maidstone Road in Leicester.

More information about the event, including ticket information.