Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government
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Windrush Day 2021 launches with £500k for celebrations

Communities across the country will receive a share of £500,000 to host events marking Windrush Day.

  • Charities, community groups and councils across England to receive £500,000 to commemorate the third national Windrush Day
  • Funding will support exhibitions, digital archives and programmes for schools on 22 June and beyond
  • Activities will place communities front and centre of Windrush Day 2021 as nation pays tribute to the Windrush Generation and their descendants

Communities across the country will receive a share of £500,000 to host events marking Windrush Day, Communities Minister Lord Greenhalgh confirmed today (25 May 2021).

Forty-two projects from across the country will be funded this year as the nation pays tribute to the outstanding contribution of the Windrush Generation and their descendants on 22 June 2021.

This year’s projects have a particular focus on working with schools and recording the memories and testimonies of the Windrush Generation for the future, telling their stories and celebrating how they have shaped Britain’s heritage.

Funded projects will hold a rich and wide-ranging series of events, including:

  • A recreation of the arrival of MV Empire Windrush at Tilbury with virtual storytelling sessions for children
  • A showcase of British Caribbean writers and their contribution to children’s literature with digital learning resources for schools in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne
  • Performance workshops for children and young people on dub poetry and traditional Jamaican dance in Liverpool
  • A museum display focusing on the Windrush Legacies contribution to High Wycombe and the furniture industries
  • Recording testimonies from the Windrush generation in Harrow about their arrival in the UK as children which will be shared with primary school children of the same age
  • A community radio programme and event in Ipswich town centre including a steel band, Windrush lectures and an interactive exhibition

See the full list of funded projects

Communities Minister Lord Greenhalgh said:

This year’s Windrush Day will be a chance for all of us to come together, either in person or virtually, to applaud the contribution British Caribbean communities have made to all aspects of our society.

Communities are planning for a brilliant array of events on 22 June, from radio programmes curated by young people, to exhibitions around the country, to workshops in schools, to music, theatre and dance productions.

All of these events will commemorate and record the outstanding legacy of the Windrush Generation and inspire our children so that generations to come will remember the huge contribution they made and continue to make to this country.

This year’s successful projects were chosen by an independent panel made up of community and government representatives, including individuals who sit on the Windrush Community Funds and Schemes sub-group.

Chair of the Windrush Community Funds and Windrush Schemes group Paulette Simpson CBE said:

As we approach Windrush Day 2021, I am delighted that 42 projects from across the country will benefit from funding for activities to celebrate and commemorate our Caribbean communities.

This year we have focused on schools in order to share stories about the Windrush Generation and their descendants, so that children will know, and always remember, the enormous contributions the Windrush Generation made and continue to make for this country.

Windrush Day 2021 will build on the success of the past two years, in which nearly 100 projects have benefitted from funding to celebrate the British Caribbean community’s culture and heritage.

Successful projects can use their funding to mark Windrush Day 2021 or launch their projects on 22 June to run throughout the year, following the impact of COVID-19.

Windrush Day

2019 saw the first national Windrush Day take place, with activities and events up and down the country. Through educational workshops, theatre performances and historical exhibitions communities honoured that landmark day over 70 years ago when the MV Empire Windrush arrived at Tilbury Docks.

The government is committed to building on the success of Windrush Day 2019 and 2020 and embedding 22 June in the national conscience, ensuring we continue to honour and recognise the outstanding resilience, innovation and creativity of the Windrush Generation and their descendants.

The Windrush Generation

Windrush Day marks the anniversary of the arrival of MV Empire Windrush at the Port of Tilbury, near London, on 22 June 1948. The arrival of the Empire Windrush nearly 73 years ago marked a seminal moment in Britain’s history and has come to represent the rich diversity of this nation.

Those who arrived on the Empire Windrush, their descendants and those who followed them have made and continue to make an enormous contribution to Britain, not just in the vital work of rebuilding the country and public services following WWII but in enriching our shared social, economic, cultural and religious life.

Overcoming great sacrifice and hardship, the Windrush Generation and their descendants have gone on to lead the field across public life, in business, the arts and sport. Britain would be much diminished without their contribution.

Further information

  • The MV Empire Windrush docked at the Port of Tilbury on 21 June 1948. However, passengers disembarked a day later on 22 June 1948 – hence why this has come to be known as Windrush Day.
  • The Windrush Day Grant Scheme was launched on 22 November 2018.
  • See more information about the community groups and local authorities that are set to receive funding.
  • The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government is a devolved department. As such, the Windrush Day Grant Scheme is an England only policy area.

Windrush Community Funds and Schemes sub-group of the Windrush Cross-Government Working Group

The Grant Scheme is overseen by the Windrush Community Funds and Schemes sub-group made up of community and government representatives. The group provides advice to government and helps to ensure that winning bids meet the objectives and requirements of the Grant Scheme.

Windrush Monument

The national Windrush Monument at Waterloo Station will be a permanent tribute to a generation of arrivals from the Caribbean to Britain – from the arrival of MV Empire Windrush in 1948 and in the decades that followed.

The 4 artists shortlisted to design the monument are all of Caribbean descent and include world renowned, established and up and coming artists working across the visual arts.

Over the summer the public will be encouraged to consider the proposals. The winning design is planned to be revealed in Black History Month in October and the monument is expected to be unveiled on Windrush Day 2022.

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