Through the working partnership of Cohesion Plus, the North Kent Caribbean Network and People Dem Collective, a full month of Black History Month activity has been scheduled and as part of the celebrations, a free screening of community led and made films at the Woodville Hall Theatre in North Kent took place on Wednesday 20th October. Supported by Arts Council England and Kent County Council the event saw dignitaries and community members alike come together to view films around the themes of race, diversity and identity.
The event also saw the showcasing of an exhibition called ‘The Windrush Front Room’ created and curated by the North Kent Caribbean Network which is currently on display at the Blake Gallery as well as keynote speech made by the Chief Constable of Kent Police Alan Pughsley QPM. A tantalising buffet was also laid out with traditional Caribbean and Indian food as part of the inclusive theme of the evening.
The cinematic premiere of the Cohesion Plus produced film ‘Identity’ which featured members of the local community, chronicling their journey’s as diverse members of society took place. The film was commissioned by the Creative Estuary Project and originally premiered online in the summer during the Thames Estuary Festival. Other short films shown were produced by North Kent Caribbean Network around what Black History Month celebrations will look like in the future, as well as social justice pieces produced by People Dem Collective.
A highlight of the evening was when Kelly Abbot of People Dem Collective was presented an aware by Gurvinder and Michelle for her outstanding support and service to the local communities.
Local residents were also recognised for their outstanding work in their respective communities as they received awards presented by the Deputy Lord Lieutenant Bhargawa Vasudaven and Mayor of Gravesham Cllr Lyn Milner.
The event was part of a series of taking place across Kent as part of Black History Month. Further activity will also be taking place in Margate and Canterbury over the coming week culminating in a screening of cult classic ‘Babylon’ at the Gulbenkian on Friday 29th October with a coach making its way from Gravesend.