Eric Irons mural

Celebrate Black History Month in Nottinghamshire

Here in the UK, October marks Black History Month, giving communities the chance to come together and celebrate the success and achievements of those in the Black Community. To mark the celebration, Visit Nottinghamshire have rounded up a number of suggestions to help you mark the occasion.

Visit Eric Irons OBE Street Art

Visit the mural dedicated to Eric Irons OBE, the UK’s first Black magistrate who moved to Nottingham from Jamaica following WW2. This street art was originally a collaboration between Nottingham Street Art Project and local artist Honey Williams, with City Arts taking over from the Nottingham Project in 2023 to support Honey in completing the mural. This stunning and thought-provoking mural is located along the Nottingham & Beeston Canal towpath, adjacent to Carrington Street bridge.

Black Sporting Icons Display at UoN

The University of Nottingham is hosting a Black sporting icons display at their Jubilee Sport Centre throughout the month of October. The exhibition pays tribute to Black sporting icons throughout the years, all you need to do is drop in.

Support Black Artists

There are a plethora of artists performing in Nottingham over the course of the next couple of months offering something for everyone. Whether it’s global stars such as Leona Lewis or Beverley Knight, or performers like Phil Okwedy showcasing his moving and warm-hearted one-man performance ‘The Gods are All Here’. There are loads of opportunities to celebrate black artists in the city. Find more events here.

Learn More About George Africanus

George Africanus (1763-1834) was Nottingham’s first black businessman and entrepreneur. George was brought to England at 3 years old from Sierra Leone to work as a servant for the Molineux family in Wolverhampton. George would eventually go onto make a name for himself as the founder of Nottingham’s first employment agency, the ‘Africanus Register of Servants’. George’s story is as powerful today as it was 200 years ago as a symbol of success in the face of prejudice. You can find plaques dedicated to George at St. Mary’s Church in the Lace Market and on Victoria Street.

Black History Month Celebrations by the Canal

To celebrate Black History Month the Canal & River Trust have teamed up with Nottingham’s newest venue Binks Yard are inviting people down to the canal side to enjoy a celebration of black artists and performers, by the water. The event runs from 12 noon – 7pm on Sunday the 8th of October. Entry is free but booking a spot is advisable which you can do here.

Black History for Beginners

On Saturday the 14th of October 2pm – 4pm, Newark and Sherwood District Council will be hosting renowned Black History Month Speaker, Paul Crooks. Paul will host an online talk, which will take listeners on a journey through the untold stories of Black British and North American people. To register for the talk click here.

A new formation – How black footballers shaped the modern game (NTU Students and Staff only)

This small seminar which is available to all NTU students and staff will take a look at the book of Callum Jacobs ‘A New Formation, How Black Footballers Shaped the Moden Game’ in a book club style session. This event is perfect for those who love sports and would like to know more about the role black footballers have played in the sport of football. For further info click here.

Read a Book by a Black Author

Last year the organisation Nottingham Black Archive hosted their event, read a black author in public event, in a celebration of black writers and literature. The University of Nottingham have collated a reading list from a number of celebrated black authors for book lovers to dive into. You can find the list here.

Attend an Event at New Art Exchange

Nottingham’s beloved New Art Exchange is hosting a number of events in celebration of Black History Month in October. There are exhibitions and events from Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Authority, artists such as Enam Gbewonyo, and music performances. Find out more about NAE’s events here.

Celebrate Black History in Healthcare

Join Nottingham University Hospitals BAME Network Black History Conference on October 20th and explore various topics in a celebration of black history in healthcare. This event is free to attend and runs between 8.30am – 5pm and is hosted at the New Art Exchange. Reserve your spot here.

Find out more about Black History Month

There are lots of ways to find out more about Black History Month this October here in Nottinghamshire. Both Nottingham Trent University and the University of Nottingham have a range of resources. The Black History Month website also has a range of useful resources which you can find on their website here.

Posted on 04 October 2023

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Jack Woolley