Building Britannia celebrates the Windrush generation and its descendants

June 22, 2022

Whilst the government’s Windrush Day is just a recent addition to the UK calendar, the George Padmore Institute has been highlighting the crucial economic, social and cultural contributions of people of Caribbean heritage since we formed in 1991.

Our archive collections honour this generation and their descendants who made the UK more culturally diverse and did so much to fight discrimination and inequality. From the Caribbean Artists Movement which supported writers, sculptors, illustrators, to the New Cross Massacre Committee which rallied to offer help and solidarity to the victims of a devastating arson attack, our archive bears witness to a black and Asian community which has enriched the UK beyond measure.

Just a few of the extraordinary contributions made by such individuals are included in one of the publications produced by the GPI. Building Britannia: Life Experience with Britain explores the history of the Black British experience through a number of talented and renowned people such as Dennis Bovell, musician and producer; Gus John, education and social justice consultant; Aggrey Burke, psychiatrist; Yvonne Brewster, theatre director and actress; Wilfred Wood, Anglican bishop; Althea McNish, textile designer and painter and Alexis Rennie, engineer.

To purchase a copy of Building Britannia, edited by Roxy Harris and Sarah White, visit the Shop on the Discover page of our website or email the GPI at

Support the George Padmore Institute

The GPI is an independent charity (1003001), it is not associated with any other organisation. We rely on grants and individual donations to continue to preserve and make available the stories of many black and Asian communities. Visit the Support Us page to see the different ways to make a donation.