About the project

In June 1948 the Empire Windrush arrived at Tilbury Docks, Essex carrying hundreds of people from the Caribbean. Many aboard had been to Britain before. Some had fought in World War Two. Most were filled with excitement and hope about coming to the ‘Mother Country’. However, this was not the first nor the last ship to carry migrants from the Caribbean. Nor was Britain an unknown world. Slavery, colonialism, and struggles for freedom had entwined the two societies for centuries.

70 years on, Windrush Stories invites us to consider a longer, more complicated and ongoing relationship between Britain and the Caribbean. Learn about the Jamaican feminist poet Una Marson. Read Trinidadian J J Thomas's scathing rebuttal of English colonialism. And see the manuscripts of Andrea Levy’s novel Small Island, James Berry’s Windrush Songs and Benjamin Zephaniah's poem 'What Stephen Lawrence Has Taught Us'.

This free learning resource draws on the British Library's exhibition Windrush: Songs in a Strange Land (1 June–21 October 2018).

With thanks to

Andrea Levy

Colin Prescod

Floella Benjamin

Darla Gilroy

Paul Boakye

Judy Griffith

Goldsmiths, Special Collections & Archives

The George Padmore Institute

Lambeth Archives

Out of Bounds Poetry Project

The Caribbean Social Forum

Alecsandra Raluca Dragoi

Our contributors

and all individuals and estates who have granted us permission to feature works.