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Bolton celebrates Black History Month

MOVE THAT BODY: Some of the dancers who will lead Black History Month celebrations in Bolton

STREET DANCERS and African drummers are set to hit the streets of Bolton this month as part of the town’s Black History Month celebrations.

More than 100 people of all ages and backgrounds gathered to celebrate the launch of the month-long celebrations earlier this month.

Throughout October, schools, community centres and places of worship will stage events to celebrate the achievements, cultures and traditions of black people.

Among the local dignitaries at the launch were Bolton’s Mayor and Mayoress Cllr Colin and Mrs Dee Shaw, former Bolton South East MP Dr Brian Iddon, chief executive of Bolton CVS Karen Minnitt, PC Amjid Mohammed and Nat Biney, chairman of the African Community Association of Bolton, which organises the programme of activities in Bolton.

Biney said: “In October each year is designated Black History Month across the whole world. Most of these achievements and contributions have been swept under the carpet instead of exposing them to the world and honouring those behind them.

"We are celebrating the 50th anniversary of that historic speech by Martin Luther King, called I have a dream.

"Today that dream has been fulfilled. In 2008 the whole world witnessed a historic moment when Barack Obama became the first African American to be elected President of USA.”

Throughout October, people can get involved in everything, from street dance and African drumming, to finding out about Freedom Fighters, thanks to a grant from the CVS.

“We want the input of everybody to be recognised but until then it is our responsibility to expose people to these achievements and maybe one day there will not be a need for Black History Month”, Biney added.

Dr Iddon, chairman of governors at Brandwood Primary School, said: “Events like this are important because they promote tolerance.

"It is important people understand different languages and cultures, particularly with what is happening today in Syria with Christians being massacred.”

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