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Black culture embraced in Ipswich

PUBLISHED: 12:30 07 October 2001 | UPDATED: 10:37 03 March 2010

BLACK History Month has only just begun but the wealth of information, insight and education it is offering into the culture of black people is already being absorbed by the people of Ipswich.

BLACK History Month has only just begun but the wealth of information, insight and education it is offering into the culture of black people is already being absorbed by the people of Ipswich.

In the coming weeks the town will be made aware of and allowed to embrace the culture and diversity this minority group enjoys and be immersed in its history.

The five weeks of events were officially welcomed by the town this week at a Memorial Lecture held at the Town Hall.

Many of the town's leading figures, including Mayor Maureen Carrington-Brown, Lin Homer, chief executive of Suffolk County Council and James Hehir, chief executive of Ipswich Borough Council, were present, who appeared alongside Neville Lawrence, patron of the town's cultural arts organisation, the nia project. >>>>

They were all present to listen to the lecture given by Dr David Dabydeen, author of three collections of poems, four novels and two books on artist William Hogarth, who spoke about black literature, one of the main focuses of this year's Black History Month.

Young vocalist Ruth Lynch also gave a rendition of I Will Rise, an optimistic piece about overcoming repression.

Del White, organiser of the region's events, said that it was exciting to see the programme of events welcomed in such a positive way.

"The memorial lecture is the corner stone which starts everything off," she said.

"Black History Month was truly welcomed and praised. A positive sentiment was expressed both on the floor and from our sponsors at the lecture.

"The emphasis is on literature. There was a time when the people of Africa couldn't read or write because they were not allowed to. Nobody was keen to publish black literature.

"Thankfully all that changed with the idea of black renaissance."

She added: "We've only just started but we're really excited that we are on our way."

nThe next events to take place as part of Black History Month are today at Ipswich Museum.

Examples of African arts will be on display and David Jones, keeper of human history at the museum, is due to talk about recent research into the local minority communities within Suffolk from the middle ages to the present. Admission to each is £2.

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