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20 years for Liverpool Slavery Remembrance Day

Liverpool Slavery Remembrance Day is marking its 20th anniversary.

This year’s event of commemoration and remembrance will take place on Friday, August 23.

It will start at 11am with the annual Walk of Remembrance which will make its way from the Church Street bandstand area to the waterfront via Liverpool One, passing the site of the historic Old Dock where slaver ships would once have moored and been repaired.

It will conclude with a libation ceremony outside the Maritime Museum at noon.

Dr Richard Benjamin, Head of the International Slavery Museum said: “In uncertain and divisive times the legacies of transatlantic slavery - intolerance, racism, discrimination and hate crime - thrive.

"That's why it has never been more important to support and get involved in Slavery Remembrance Day. In our 20th year, we’re inviting people to be active, to show their solidarity by walking.”

Meanwhile this year’s Dorothy Kuya Slavery Remembrance Lecture will be given by writer, photographer and broadcast journalist Johny Pitts who has received various awards for his work exploring Afro-European identity, including a Decibel Penguin Prize and an ENAR (European Network Against Racism) award.

Johny Pitts Photo: ©Jamie Stoker.

Pitts said: “As a northerner with enslaved people in my ancestry, it's an honour to engage with the powerful work happening in Liverpool. It’s work that asks us to enter the lives and struggles of those woven out of so many historical narratives, and face up to a legacy that persists in current global power structures.”

The event takes place at the Merseyside Maritime Museum at 6pm on August 22. Tickets are free but must be booked in advance HERE.

Liverpool was the European capital of the transatlantic slave trade, responsible for half of Britain’s trade. More than 4,500 slaver ship voyages were made from the city.

The ships set sail from Liverpool with goods and weapons, which were exchanged for enslaved men, women and children mainly on the west coast of Africa who were then taken across the Atlantic in a horrific journey known as ‘the Middle Passage’. Ships departing Liverpool would go on to carry an estimated 1.5 million enslaved Africans into slavery.

Slavery Remembrance Day events are organised by National Museums Liverpool in partnership with Liverpool City Council.

Photo top: ©Pete Carr

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