Enter News, Quotes, Companies or Videos
LIVERPOOL, England—Standing on a rain-drenched boulevard in this northern English port city, Laurence Westgaph points to an empty stone plinth that sits at the heart of Britain’s oldest Black community.
The statue that once stood there—of a local Liverpool dignitary with links to the slave trade—was pulled down by protesters following riots, he says.
That was back in 1982.
Today the Black Lives Matter movement is prying open yet another chapter in Liverpool’s reckoning with a past that many say it has repeatedly struggled to confront. Mr. Westgaph is part of a community of Black Britons who can trace their families as far back as 200 years when waves of slaves, sailors and some Black Loyalists from the American Revolution settled here as Liverpool prospered from a trading boom built on the back of industrial-scale human trafficking.
“Liverpool is probably the greatest memorial to British involvement in slaving,” the 45-year-old historian says walking through the inner-city district of Toxteth on a recent day.
We are delighted that you’d like to resume your subscription.
You will be charged $ + tax (if applicable) for The Wall Street Journal. You may change your billing preferences at any time in the Customer Center or call Customer Service. You will be notified in advance of any changes in rate or terms. You may cancel your subscription at anytime by calling Customer Service.
Please click confirm to resume now.