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Slavery Remembrance Day 2015 with David Olusoga

Posted on Wednesday 19th August 2015
David Olusoga

British-Nigerian historian, broadcaster and film-maker, David Olusoga, to deliver memorial lecture in Liverpool Downloadable image link below

Unfortunately, Ndaba Mandela, who was due to speak at this year’s Dorothy Kuya Slavery Remembrance Lecture on Friday, is now unable to attend.

We are pleased to say that British-Nigerian historian, broadcaster and film-maker, David Olusoga has accepted our invitation to deliver the lecture, so the event is able to continue in Dorothy Kuya’s memory.

David Olusoga is a British-Nigerian historian, broadcaster and film-maker. Born in Lagos, Nigeria, he’s a multi award-winning documentary maker and is the presenter of the BBC 2 series - The World’s War: Forgotten Soldiers of Empire and Britain’s Forgotten Slave Owners. He has also appeared on numerous BBC live events and is a regular presenter on The One Show.

David is currently writing a new history of slavery entitled 5000 Years a Slave, and a new history of the British colonisation of Tasmania entitled White Slavery and the Black War. David has written for The Guardian, The Observer, The Nation and BBC History Magazine.

Claire Benjamin, Deputy Director, Education and Visitors at National Museums Liverpool said:

“We are so grateful to David for stepping in, to deliver the lecture at such short notice. We’re sure that his lecture will be of great interest following his recent acclaimed BBC documentary Britain’s Forgotten Slave Owners.

We hope that people who have booked to attend the lecture will join us for what promises to be a thought-provoking evening, not forgetting the meaning behind this important occasion, which is part of a weekend of events, culminating in Slavery Remembrance Day itself on Sunday 23 August and the Walk of Remembrance.”

We hope that ticket holders will still join us for what promises to be a thought-provoking evening, not forgetting the meaning behind this important occasion. Should anyone wish to cancel their tickets, please do so through Eventbrite, as we’re sure this will be a popular lecture and there will be a demand for cancellation tickets.

The three-day programme has been taking place in Liverpool since 1999 with the main day of activity on Slavery Remembrance Day itself, Sunday 23 August. Events include:       

  • Friday 21 August: Dorothy Kuya Slavery Remembrance Lecture by David Olusoga at the Dr Martin Luther King Jnr building, Albert Dock. Sense of Sound will open this year’s event with a choir performance. Doors open at 5pm and the lecture will start at 6pm. This event is now fully booked. If any places become available, information about tickets (which are free) will be available through our website at: www.liverpoolmuseums.org.uk/srd  
  • Saturday 22 August: Family events from 1-4pm at the International Slavery Museum 
  • Sunday 23 August: Walk of Remembrance (starts noon) through Liverpool city centre and Libation ceremony (starts 1pm) at Albert Dock. Everyone is free to join the walk. Following the Libation a variety of events will take place at the International Slavery Museum including commemorative arts and crafts activities.

More information on Slavery Remembrance Day events in Liverpool can be found at: www.liverpoolmuseums.org.uk/srd and at #SRDLiverpool.

Notes to editors

Slavery Remembrance Day

Slavery Remembrance Day has taken place annually in Liverpool on 23 August since 1999. August 23 is a significant date as it commemorates an uprising of enslaved Africans on the island of Saint-Domingue (modern Haiti) in 1791. Slavery Remembrance Day is organised by National Museums Liverpool in partnership with Liverpool City Council. For the last 15 years people have converged on the Albert Dock to remember those affected by slavery during a traditional Libation ceremony. The Walk of Remembrance has been taking place in Liverpool since 2011.

David Olusoga

David Olusoga is a British-Nigerian historian, broadcaster and film-maker.  

Born in Lagos, Nigeria he’s a multi award-winning documentary maker and is the presenter of the BBC 2 Series - The World’s War: Forgotten Soldiers of Empire, and Britain’s Forgotten Slave Owners. He has also appeared on numerous BBC live events and is a regular presenter on The One Show.

David is also an award-winning author. His first book was The Kaiser’s Holocaust: Germany’s Forgotten Genocide and the Colonial Roots of Nazism (Faber & Faber 2010). His recent book The World’s War (Head of Zeus, 2014), was the winner of the World War One Book of the Year at the Political Book Awards 2015. David was also a contributor to the Oxford Companion to Black British History.

He is currently writing a new history of slavery entitled, 5000 Years a Slave, and a new history of the British colonisation of Tasmania entitled White Slavery and the Black War. David has written for The Guardian, The Observer, The Nation and BBC History Magazine.

As a producer on TV and radio David’s programmes have explored the themes of empire, military-history, race, slavery, and contemporary culture in the UK and USA.

David will join an illustrious roll call of speakers who in recent years have included civil rights campaigner Mr Martin Luther King III, award-winning film director Amma Asante, renowned activist and scholar Dr Maulana Karenga, civil rights campaigner Diane Nash, Zimbabwe's first Black cricketer Henry Olonga and poet Lemn Sissay. See photos from previous years in our highlights gallery on this website.

Dorothy Kuya Slavery Remembrance Lecture

The Dorothy Kuya Slavery Remembrance Lecture is named after a woman described as ‘Liverpool’s greatest fighter against racism’, Dorothy Kuya.

Dorothy Kuya, 80, passed away in 2013. Born in Liverpool 8, Dorothy had an impact far beyond Merseyside becoming one of the country’s leading figures in combating inequality.

Dorothy Kuya was Liverpool’s first Community Relations Officer and became Head of Race Equality for Haringey Council before moving back to Merseyside in 1994. She was part of Granby Residents Association and campaigned against the demolition of homes in the area.

Dorothy was also instrumental in helping set up the International Slavery Museum which opened in 2007 and Slavery Remembrance Day which was first marked in the city in 1999.

Memorial Lectures in recent years have been delivered by civil rights campaigner Mr Martin Luther King III, renowned activist and scholar Dr Maulana Karenga, civil rights campaigner Diane Nash and Zimbabwe’s first Black cricketer Henry Olonga.

About National Museums Liverpool

National Museums Liverpool comprises eight venues. Our collections are among the most important and varied in Europe and contain everything from Impressionist paintings and rare beetles to a lifejacket from the Titanic. We attract nearly 2.7m visitors every year. Our venues are World Museum, Museum of Liverpool, the Walker Art Gallery, Merseyside Maritime Museum, International Slavery Museum, Border Force National Museum, Sudley House and the Lady Lever Art Gallery. 

International Slavery Museum

The International Slavery Museum opened in August 2007. It is situated on the third floor of the Merseyside Maritime Museum at the Albert Dock. It is the only national museum in the world to cover the transatlantic slave trade and its legacies as well as contemporary forms of slavery and enslavement. It is also an international hub for resources on human rights issues and campaigning.

Liverpool and the slave trade

Liverpool became the major port for the transatlantic slave trade. Liverpool ships were involved in forcibly transporting as many as 1.5 million enslaved Africans across the Atlantic from 1699 until the British Parliament passed the Act for the Abolition of the Slave Trade in 1807. As a result, much of the city’s wealth in the 18th and 19th centuries came from the profits made by the enslavement of Africans which cemented the foundations for the port’s future growth. In 1999 Liverpool City Council passed a formal motion apologising for the city’s role in the transatlantic slave trade and the enslavement of Africans.