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Black History Month takes place annually in October, and is a month-long event dedicated to recognising the contribution of those in the UK with African or Caribbean heritage. It also aims to celebrate the achievements of Black and Brown people throughout history.

The theme in 2021 is ‘Proud To Be’. It’s inspired by the Black Lives Matter protests of 2020 and invites Black and Brown people of all ages throughout the UK to share what they are Proud To Be. Catherine Ross of Black History Month UK says: “We wanted the theme of Black History Month 2021 to focus on celebrating being Black or Brown, and to inspire and share the pride people have in their heritage and culture – in their own way, in their own words.”

The aims of Black History Month are to:

  • promote knowledge and understanding of Black History and culture, both nationally and in Portsmouth
  • acknowledge and celebrate the contributions made by Black and Brown people to the cultural and economic development of the UK

How you can support Black History Month in Portsmouth

We’ll be celebrating Black History Month on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter throughout October, so get involved – like, comment, share and show your support for Black History Month 2021.

Why not share your story or the stories of those who have inspired you. What challenges have they faced and overcome?

If you’re posting online, use the hashtags #BlackHistoryMonth, #ProudToBe and #BHMPortsmouth to join in the conversations around Black History Month.

Find out what else is happening this Black History Month

Check out the Black History Month collections in Central, Cosham and Southsea branches that celebrate the stories of black authors. The digital library collection also features a collection of books, DVDs, eBooks and eAudio for you to enjoy.

Freegal, the library’s digital music service, also has a Black History Month playlist for streaming.

Follow the libraries on Facebook (Portsmouth libraries), Twitter (Portsmouth Reads) and Instagram (Ports libraries) on as they share activities throughout the month.

Take a journey through the compelling stories of modern slavery survivors at a new exhibition Slavery: Unmasking The Truth travelling through three of Portsmouth’s libraries from 16 Nov.

Black History Month UK’s website also lists a number of events taking place in Portsmouth and nationally so you can join in the festivities.

Portsmouth anti-discrimination film: 'Illuminated Voices' by Majid Dhana

Portsmouth City Council partnered with Portsmouth Football Club and Pompey in the Community to produce an anti-discrimination film. The film is released at the start of National Hate Crime Awareness Week 2021 and during Black History Month, highlighting that discrimination is not just a football problem, but a problem that everyone has a role in preventing. Read more about the film.

Portsmouth stories

Read a selection of ‘Proud To Be’ stories from members of the black and brown community who live or work in Portsmouth.