Prof Gary Younge and Prof Alan Rice. Photo: Tony Maiden (tony@prestonblackhistorygroup)
The events held on 23-25 June 2023 to mark the 80th anniversary of the Battle of Bamber Bridge were attended by members of the local community, local dignitaries such as the Mayors of Preston and South Ribble Borough Council, and national and international guests, including the Spokesperson of the US Embassy. The commemoration events received worldwide media attention, including on National Public Radio (NPR) in the USA and via the Associated Press in the Independent, the Washington Post, ABC News, and others, in addition to local coverage on BBC Radio Lancashire and in the Lancashire Evening Post and Lancashire Telegraph. The event on Friday 23 June was hosted by IBAR, while the weekend activities on 24 and 25 June were hosted by Preston Black History Group and South Ribble Borough Council.
Delegates, Speaker and Members of the Public, including Prof Gary Younge, Clinton Smith (Chair Preston Black History Group), Prof Alan Rice (IBAR), Jemma Rogers (producer of The Return of the Railway Children), Aaron Snipe (US Embassy), Danny Lyons (Director, Community Memories of the Battle of Bamber Bridge), Gregory Cooke (Director, Invisible Warriors) Photo: Tony Maiden (tony@prestonblackhistorygroup)
This commemoration was made possible in part through funding initiatives led by IBAR’s co-director, Professor Alan Rice, through the Research Institute for Migration, Diaspora and Exile (MIDEX), and Clinton Smith, Chairman of Preston Black History Group, who has campaigned for four decades to raise public awareness of this event. On 23 June, director Gregory Cooke gave the European premiere of his ground-breaking film Invisible Warriors and shared personal insight into its development, and Professor Gary Younge delivered a fascinating keynote talk just one day after winning the 2023 Orwell Prize for Journalism. A speech was also given by Jemma Rodgers, producer of the film The Return of the Railway Children (StudioCanal); and director Danny Lyons showed part of his film Community Memories of the Battle of Bamber Bridge. Thank you to all who made this event a success, including members of IBAR and MIDEX as well as UCLan colleagues in Library and Information Services, Catering, Venue Hire, Security, Events and Publicity.