Cuthbert Williams MBE – Co-Founder of Brighton & Hove Black History Group

In 2020, over 12,000 people took to the streets of Brighton and Hove to protest and show their support for the Black Lives Matter Movement. Members of the community came together to share, educate and support Brighton’s diverse history.

Latest TV Presenter and Producer, Stephanie Prior met with Cuthbert Williams MBE to explore his story of being part of the Windrush generation, his experiences of arriving in the UK from Jamaica and moving to Brighton in the 1960s.

In 2011 Bert Williams, who founded the group Brighton and Hove Black History, was named in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List and received an MBE for his voluntary work dedicated to representing and servicing the black and minority ethnic people in Sussex.

Bert is a black history expert who has used his knowledge and passion for representation, to educate the community on Brighton’s rich black history. Bert is Co-Founder of Brighton & Hove Black History Month, which leads on revealing Brighton & Hove’s hidden past and helping local people get involved in mapping their own history of Brighton & Hove.

During this interview Bert provides insight into untold stories and hidden gems that hold much significance in the city. This includes history such as Queen Victoria’s ‘black daughter’,  Sarah Forbes Bonetta, who visited Brighton as a free woman in the 19th Century, to marry at St Nicholas Church.

Watch this inspiring interview which uncovers Brighton’s rich and untold history through the story and experiences of local legend Bert Williams.

In part one, Bert Williams introduces his life and work in founding Black History Month in Brighton.

In part two, we explore Bert’s memories of growing up in Jamaica, arriving in the UK in the 1960s and his experiences of racism.

In this third and final part, we discuss the contribution of common-wealth countries to the British empire and its connects to Brighton. We also explore Bert meeting Prince Charles and being awarded an MBE as well as his opinions of the current landscape…

Words by Stephanie Prior

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