No funding for Sheffield to commemorate Windrush

Sheffield has missed out on funding to commemorate Windrush – and a senior councillor has blamed the Government.

By The Newsroom
Monday, 15 April, 2019, 13:24
Councillor Mary Lea – cabinet member for culture, parks and leisure.

Thousands of communities nationwide had the opportunity to bid for a share of £500,000 of new funding to hold events to celebrate the contribution of the Windrush Generation.

But Sheffield Council says a very short deadline meant it didn’t have time to apply and community groups who tried to bid found the process complex and ran out of time.

The fund will provide money to local councils, charities and community organisations to hold commemorative and educational events to mark the arrival of the Empire Windrush at Tilbury Docks 70 years ago.

Coun Mary Lea, cabinet member for culture, said: “Sheffield Council was sent an email by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government inviting us to attend a Windrush Bidders Day event in Leeds on Friday, December 21.

“The invite was sent to us at 1pm on Thursday, December 20. Given the extremely late notice, we were unable to attend the session.”

Green councillor Kaltum Rivers asked a written question about whether the council had encouraged any community groups to make a bid.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Coun Lea replied: “We did put information about the grant fund on to the Equality Hub Network website and included information about the grant fund in the December edition of the Equality Hub newsletter.

“We are aware that various community organisations in the city did make applications but were not successful.

“We picked up issues around the limited time available for groups to formulate applications and the need to complete quite detailed paperwork.”

A national Windrush Day will take place annually on June 22 and will encourage communities to celebrate the contribution of the Windrush Generation and their descendants.

Seventy years ago, on June 22, 1948, the Empire Windrush landed at Tilbury Docks in Essex.

The arrival of 492 passengers from the Caribbean marked a seminal moment in Britain’s history and the Windrush Generation made a huge contribution to rebuilding the country following the Second World War. Their descendants have continued to enrich social, economic, political and religious life.