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Find out what’s happening in London for Black History Month

Written by
Things To Do Editors

Dozens of events are taking place across London to commemorate 31 years of Black History Month in the UK

Black History Walks

These legendary walks open up a hidden world of African heritage sites, architecture and historic graffiti in the capital that are often overlooked by your average London guides. ‘I had done a number of the typical tourist trails and was amazed and annoyed that in two hours there was no mention of Africa or the Caribbean,’ says Black History Walks founder Tony Warner. ‘There is a plethora of artefacts literally from Africa on public display that are 1,500 years older than London itself, and no, they weren’t “gifts”. I thought that history deserved telling.’ Black History Walks run across various London locations. For details and to book visit

Ashton Attzs

Black Sheroes Month

Lon-art has curated this exhibition taking place during Black History Month, shining a light on heroines within the black community and telling the stories of inspirational female role models. Friday will see the book launch of ‘The Colour of Madness’, which delves into black, Asian and minority ethnic mental health in the UK, while spoken word performances will take place on the Saturday. Look out for the Sunday workshop with artist Camille Barton, who’ll be running a movement and meditation session. Ugly Duck. Tube: London Bridge. Fri Oct 5-Sun Oct 7. £12 (weekend), £5 (day).

Black Girls Book Club

Friends Melissa Cummings-Quarry and Natalie Carter formed Black Girls Book club as a cosy, welcoming networking space where women and girls could get together and discuss black literature. This October they’re taking the club to the next level with a series of special events called ‘A Seat at the Table’ – including an audience with the author of ‘Noughts & Crosses’ Malorie Blackman (Oct 20) and activist Munroe Bergdorf (Oct 22). Secret location. Find out more here

Black History Market

Shop for clothes, food, stationery, books, jewellery and beauty products at this one-day market showcasing and championing African and Caribbean businesses. The fair will be springing up at Impact Hub Brixton at Pop Brixton. Pop Brixton. Tube Brixton. Sat Oct 6. Free.

’Do the Right Thing‘

A Spike Lee Mixtape Season

If you loved the acclaimed 1970s-set police drama ‘BlacKkKlansman’ but are pretty much ignorant of Spike Lee’s savage political back catalogue – get yourself to Deptford Cinema. The south-east movie house will be showing a handpicked selection of the director’s earlier works for this BHM season. Revisit the days when Denzel Washington was his muse for jazz flick ‘Mo’ Better Blues’, see the lesser-known ‘Bamboozled’, the brilliant ‘Clockers’ and if you haven’t already done it (what’s wrong with you?), catch Lee’s second feature ‘Do the Right Thing’. Deptford Cinema. Deptford Bridge DLR. Oct 11-26. Each film £6.

Black British Excellence in the Music Industry: Are We There Yet?

After leaving grime collective BOMB Squad, east London musician Hak Baker moved into stripped-back acoustic music, subverting British folk with his unique sound. He knows what it’s like to navigate different genres in the UK music scene, which makes him an exciting addition to this discussion on black excellence and identity in the industry. Hak will be sharing the panel hosted by Love At First Vibe (LAFV) with DJ Chuckie Lothian, academic and reggae artist Mykaell Riley and Antonia Odunlami, music editor at gal-dem. The Curtain hotel. Shoreditch High St Overground. Oct 17. Free, register in advance. 

Bettmann/Getty Images

Fists of Defiance: Tommie Smith 50 Years After Mexico ’68

With debates about the NFL players ‘taking a knee’ in protest still circulating in the 24-hour news cycle, the iconic image of athletes Tommie Smith and John Carlos – standing on the podium at the 1968 Mexico City Olympics with their fists raised in a black power salute – has never felt more prescient. Fifty years on, hear Smith speak about the repercussions and legacy of his symbolic gesture in conversation with BBC presenter Clive Myrie and guests Reginald D Hunter and Christine Ohuruogu at the British Library. The British Library. Tube: King’s Cross. Oct 10. £15 standing ticket.

Find more BHM events across London on the Black History Month website



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