Black History Month

Black History Month is celebrated each year in October in the UK. The aim is for local communities to challenge racism and educate themselves and others about black history.

Black History Month (BHM) is an annual celebration to honour the too-often unheralded accomplishments of Black Britons throughout our history.

BHM 2022

This year BHM UK has the theme of "Time for Change: Action Not Words".

To get to a better tomorrow, it encourages everyone to not just focus on the past. The past is in the past. We can acknowledge and learn from it, but to improve the future, we need action, not words. We need to come together around a shared common goal to achieve a better world for everyone.

Join us, see something, say something, and don't be a passive bystander. Not just at the weekend in the club or playing sports, but on the street, in shops, at work.

Black History Month banner 2022


Interview with Kemi Badenoch

The Rt Hon Kemi Badenoch MP, Minister of Secretary of State for International Trade and President of the Board of Trade and MP for Saffron Walden, talks about how Black History Month has become more prominent today than it was 25 years ago and how differently we talk about black history in the UK compared to Nigeria.

Read the full interview on the BHM website.

Local events

Find out what is happening locally.

Essex Cultural Diversity Project

The Essex Cultural Diversity Project is once again supporting events and activities taking place across the county. These range from the Tilbury Bridge Walkway of Memories, an art and sound installation by artist EVEWRIGHT to the pop-up Windrush exhibition which will be going out with the outreach mobile library for Black History Month. More information about the Windrush exhibition.

Essex Libraries

The theme for Black History Month UK 2022 is Time for Change: Action Not Words, with the aim to learn from the past and improve the future. Here's a selection of their recommendations for what to borrow from Essex Libraries and through the e-library.

Essex Libraries have also curated a Black History Month Takeover Episode of The Only Way is Reading Podcast. In it they discuss This Lovely City by Louise Hare. This is a murder mystery novel set around Brixton's Windrush community. Listen now to the Only Way is Reading Podcast.

Harlow Black History Festival 2022

This free festival takes place on Saturday 1 October, 11.30am to 5.30pm and features music and dance as well as numerous stalls.

Venue: Harlow Bandstand, Park Lane, Harlow CM20 2QQ

See a copy of the festival poster.

Essex Record Office

Essex Record Office have wide ranging collections recording the history of the county. Included are interviews created by Evewright Arts Foundation for their Caribbean Takeaway Takeover exhibition.  From 2017 to 2018, artist Everton Wright (EVEWRIGHT), staff, and volunteers of his art foundation recorded oral history interviews with 10 elders who moved to the UK from the Caribbean in the 1940s to 1960s. And they also have the earliest record of a Black individual in Essex dating from 1580!

Anglia Ruskin University

Join Anglia Ruskin University (ARU) in October as they explore aspects of Black British history and host the Olaudah Equiano Annual Lecture on Race Justice.

And, to mark Black History Month ARU's Chancellor, Lord Ribeiro, has written about his career in medicine, his journey to becoming a Peer in the House of Lords, and what he has learnt along the way.

Find out more about Black History Month events at ARU.

BHM events

The BHM event creators have assembled a packed programme of events that inspire action, education, and awareness. You can find a handpicked cross-section of Black History Month events taking place across Essex on the BHM website.


BHM introductions

Interviews and comments from notable supporters of BHM. Including Dawn Butler MP, The Rt Hon The Lord Paul Boateng of Akyem and Wembley PC DL and Patrick Vernon

Black History Month Resource Pack 2022 - Time for change

The BHM team have put together an updated resource pack for 2022. Reflecting the diversity of schools across the country, they have chosen to use a range of lesson plan formats to mirror this difference, and to provide more schools with an opportunity of an immediate point of familiarity, which will enable some schools to teach these lessons without further modification.

Find how to order a Black History Month Resource Pack 2022 on the BHM website.


Black History Month quotes banner

To celebrate Black History Month, Cllr Louise Pepper,  the council's Portfolio Holder for Environment, Green Issues and Equalities has put together a selection of quotes from inspiring black people.

Quotes for Black History Month (PDF) [8MB]