Breaking the Stereotype

West Indian Veteran

Vincent Daniel was destined to follow the family trend and join the teaching profession until the Army was suggested as an alternative and means to learning a trade. On 4th September 1964; aged 19, he began basic training at Sutton Coldfield Barracks as a Fusilier with the Royal Warwickshire Regiment.

RAF

OSCAR Sandwell Co.Ltd.RAF West Indians

Donald Campbell served 36 years in the Royal Air Force and retired as a Warrant Officer in 2006. His years of service as an engineer extended to many countries around the world, including Northern Ireland, Germany, Holland, Denmark, Norway, Sardinia, Saudi, Falkland Islands and the USA.

Remembrance Sunday Birmingham 2013

Birmingham Remembrance Sunday 2013 . W I R

Photograph curtesy of Gillian Hill

Once again the WAWI Project ensures Caribbean Contributions are remembered at the Parade in Birmingham City Centre, as well as at local church services including the Church of Ascension, Hall Green and Cannon Street, Baptist Church. 

Around the Commonwealth you will find people paying respects to all those who were willing to make the ultimate sacrifce. 

Thank You One And All

We Will Remember All of Them

Birmingham Air Raids Remembrance Association

WAWI on Parade at BARRA Annual Service of Remembrance

The WAWI Project supports any organisation that puts education at the top of their agenda. For that reason members were proud to be on parade at St Matins Church for a Service of Remembrance of the Birmingham Blitz and of Thanksgiving for the Survivors.

Its aim to commemorate the 2241 people who lost their lives during the Second World War bombing of Birmingham between 9th August 1940 and the 23rd April 1943.

British National Service and the British West Indian

British National Service and the British West Indian

British National Service started in 1947 shortly after the end of World War 2, formalised by the National Service Act of 1948. 

The rationale of National Service was in the event of another war breaking out; young men would be trained and ready to serve. Britain was obligated to provide protection across the Commonwealth but with only a limited number of men still in active service. 

Financially bankrupt, Britain sought assistance from the American Marshall Plan to aid her recovery but later withdrew her request due to too many strings attached. 

Annual memorial service for Federation Day

Annual memorial service for Federation Day

"We give thanks for the courage of our brothers and sisters in arms. For the strength of their backs and their wills, for the grit and their trustiness, for their spirit and determination, for their sense and their skill. We give you thanks. May we be to them as good a comrade as they have been to us, and may your strong arm defend and empower us daily".

Service led by Rev. David Bennett, Padre, FBESA.

Lest we forget the Nursing Profession

SS Empire Windrush Sunday 23 June 2013 : NHS Nurse's Remembered

Many Caribbean women appear to have a pre-determined calling to join the Caring Profession.

In 1780 Couba Cornwallis nursed Horatio Nelson back to health when he was struck down with fever, and Mary Seacole travelled to the Crimea to help wounded Soldiers.

When in 1948 the Minister of Health spearheaded a new venture 'The National Health Service' an extensive and energetic recruitment campaign was put into place for qualified people from the Caribbean.

Their response overwhelming; each individual responding to the call of duty.

SS Empire Windrush 65th Anniversary Remembrance Service

W I Regimental Standards on Parade, SS Empire Windrush Sunday 2013

22nd June 2013 marked the 65th Anniversary of the arrival of the SS EmpireWindrush. Yet in truth until 6 years ago I had no knowledge or understanding as to what Windrush was or meant. Thankfully that changed because of one person who has worked tirelessly uncovering England's Hidden History, educating a nation and teaching us all the true meaning of kinship.

Standards Paraded included:

Soldiers of the British West Indian Regiment Commemorated on the Menin Gate

British West Indies Troops lost in the Ypres Salient

The following article was contributed by Paul Finegan - Royal British Legion (Halesowen Branch)

In March I had the honour of accompanying The Lord Mayor of Birmingham, Councillor John Lines on a visit to The Western Front, which included an overnight stop in the Belgian town of Ypres; home to the Menin Gate. 

Equal Rights Charter

The Queen is to sign a new charter backing equal rights in every Commonwealth nation. 

The document declares - "We are implacably opposed to all forms of disrcimination, whether rooted in gender, race, colour, creed, political belief or other grounds".

It was adopted in December 2012 by all 54 Commonwealth Nations and will be signed by the Monarch at an event in London on 11th March to mark Commonwealth Day.

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