This day conference, set up with help from MJR, was held at the end of April at Gladstone's Library in Hawarden, North Wales. It was led by Dr Nick Draper, Director of the Centre for the Study of the Legacies of British Slave Ownership, whose research lay behind the BBC programme 'Britain's Forgotten Slave Owners'. Nick took the 18 delegates through a history of Britain's role in the transatlantic slave trade. He focused on the £20m payment by the Government made as compensation to the slave owners in 1833 when slavery was abolished, and the large number of ordinary people who owned slaves. Given the venue and the fact that much of the Gladstone family wealth came from the plantations and slaves owned by John Gladstone, of particular interest was his Prime Minister son William's own position on slavery. Let's just say there was a difference between the received (and sanitised) version and views that he held as a man of his time. In a fascinating and thought-provoking day much was said about the legacy of enslavement, including how its remembrance has been eclipsed by that of abolition.
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