We are commemorating Windrush Day, which this year marks the 72nd anniversary of the day in 1948 when Caribbean passengers onboard HMT Windrush disembarked at the port of Tilbury near London.
Many of the migrants had served in the British army during the Second World War. They were answering an advert to help rebuild war-torn Britain and to begin new lives. They settled across the UK and some of them made Hounslow their home.
All of those who arrived in Britain between 1948 and 1973 became known as the Windrush Generation. Their social, economic and cultural contributions to Britain have been enormous. But they faced prejudice and discrimination the moment they arrived and, sadly, their mistreatment continues today.
In 2018 reports emerged of settled British Caribbean citizens being threatened with deportation. It became known as the Windrush Scandal.
Windrush Day is therefore a day not only to celebrate the contribution the generation made to Britain, but also a time for the winder community to stand together and make sure the rights of our fellow citizens are upheld and that they are treated with dignity and respect.
To mark this special day, we are launching a new project to help tell the important history of the Windrush Generation here in Hounslow.
History of Hounslow’s Communities
Do you have a story to tell?
We are inviting members of the local British Caribbean communities to tell your stories of migration to the borough. Can you describe your first impression and your initial experience? Where did you live and work? What are the stories of your ancestors and descendants?
Your stories, photos and drawings will form part of Hounslow Library’s “History of Hounslow’s Communities”. This new archive will be used to educate residents and to celebrate the contributions of our diverse communities.
Please send your stories and pictures to Sarfraz.Kherdin@hounslow.gov.uk, our Principal Equalities Officer.
Windrush arts project for Hounslow and Ealing residents
The Descendants charity, an education project for children and young people of primarily African and Caribbean descent, is running a Windrush arts project exploring the arrival of migrants in 1948.
They are inviting children and their parents and carers ”to think about your parents, grandparents and great grandparents” and “create a piece of art which shows what the arrival of the Empire Windrush means to you.”
The artwork will be turned into an exhibition and full details can be found on the Descendants web site.
Read more about the Windrush Generation in this fascinating article from the British Library.