Daily Mail

City to act on its slave-trade stat­ues

- By Arthur Martin Slavery · Society · London · City of London · United Kingdom · City of London Corporation · Beckford

STAT­UeS linked to his­tor­i­cal slav­ery could be re­moved from Lon­don in re­sponse to the Black Lives Mat­ter move­ment.

The City of Lon­don Cor­po­ra­tion, which runs the fi­nan­cial dis­trict, yes­ter­day launched a pub­lic con­sul­ta­tion ask­ing if con­tentious mon­u­ments should go.

The move could lead to the tak­ing down of stat­ues and plaques and re­nam­ing of streets and build­ing. A cam­paign has al­ready be­gun to re­move from the Guild­hall a statue of 18th-cen­tury Lord Mayor Wil­liam Beck­ford, the largest slave owner of his time. ear­lier this year a pe­ti­tion claimed such mon­u­ments ‘glo­rify fig­ures who prof­ited from slav­ery’.

A Cor­po­ra­tion spokesman said yes­ter­day: ‘We want to un­der­stand how peo­ple feel about this as­pect of our cul­tural his­tory.’ In June, the Bank of eng­land ex­pressed re­gret over its own slav­ery links and vowed to re­move im­ages of gov­er­nors and di­rec­tors in­volved. Sir Humphry Morice, a gov­er­nor from 1727 to 1729, once owned more slave ships than any­one else in Bri­tain.

Sev­eral large com­pa­nies also apol­o­gised and promised repa­ra­tions after their his­tor­i­cal links to slav­ery were ex­posed.

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