Bernie Grant MP Plaque: October 2012

Bernie Grant MP Plaque

Date of Installation: October 2012
Plaque: Blue

WHAT: Historic Heritage Plaque Unveiling and Gala Reception in honour of Europe’s first black leader of a council and pioneering MP – BERNIE GRANT

WHEN: Sunday 28th October 2012 at 3:00pm – 7:30pm. WHERE: The Blue Plaque unveiling will take place on Grade II Listed building Tottenham Old Town Hall , where Bernie held his legendary surgeries – some late into the night. The unveiling will be followed by a gala reception next door inside the Bernie Grant Arts Centre Town Hall Approach, Tottenham, London , N15 4RX

FIND OUT how Bernie Grant stared out as union steward, rose through the ranks of NUPE to become a respected trade unionist, then leader of Haringey council, before finally becoming one of the first African Caribbean MPs in British political history in 1987. The plaque commemorates the 25th anniversary of his election as MP.

MEET/FILM/PHOTOGRAPH Bernie’s wife, three sisters and two of his sons, friends and colleagues of Bernie Grant, past and present political colleagues, allies and enemies, distinguished guests, celebrities, and a large cross section of the Haringey community who will be coming out in force to support this tribute.

FILM/PHOTOGRAPH behind the scenes tribute from celebrated MPs, artists and entertainers as they pay tribute to Bernie Grant.

· Sharon Grant (widow), Waveney, Efua and Rosamund (sisters), and two of Bernie’s two
· With peers Baronesses Ros Howells and Lola Young, and Lord Boateng
· MPs David Lammy and Diane Abbott, and former MPs
· Entertainers and artists including Jak Beula, Founder of the Nubian Jak Commemorative Plaque and Sculpture Scheme, which organises Europe’'s only Black and Minority Ethnic plaque and sculpture scheme.
· The Mayor of Haringey as well as Deputy Leader of the council.
The Bernie Grant Memorial Plaque is organised by the Nubian Jak Community Trust in Association with Haringey Council, UNISON, and the Lee Valley Estates. The tribute forms part of the 25th anniversary OF Bernie Grant becoming an MP and 25 years of BHM celebrations in the UK .
Plaque Memorial Ceremony 3:00 - 4:00pm Tottenham Old Town Hall, Town Hall Approach, N15, 4RY
Reception Gala 4:30pm - 7:30pm Bernie Grants Arts Centre, Town Hall Approach, Tottenham, N15, 4RX

Planning notes:

Bernie Grant was born Bernard Alexander Montgomery Grant on 17 February, 1944, in Georgetown, Guyana. He was the second of five children born to his parents, who were both teachers. After leaving school Bernie took up chemistry, before joining his family in England in 1963. Initially, he worked for British Rail for a couple of years before going to university to study mining engineering in Scotland. However, after a couple of years he quit his degree citing racism as a factor, and became an international telephonist and union shop steward with the General Post Office Union of Post Office Workers.

It was there that he was introduce into the world of the trade unions, and he quickly became a rising star in the local authority workers’ union, NUPE. He joined the Tottenham Labour Party in 1973 and was elected a local councillor in 1978. Within a year he had become deputy leader inside a year, and by 1985 he was council leader outright, Europe ’s first black leader of a local authority. That year also saw the Broadwater Farm Estate riots take place, which claimed the life of a policeman and made national headlines. However, in less than 2 years Bernie Grant would become the elected member of parliament for Tottenham – the rest as they say (see above) is history.

Notes to Editors

1. The Bernie Grant Memorial Plaque is being organised by the Nubian Jak Community Trust, in association with Haringey Council, Unison, and the ,Lee Valley Estates. The tribute forms parts of the 25th anniversary of Bernie Grant becoming and MP as well as the 25th anniversary of Black History Month in the UK . The tribute will also be supported by local dignitaries, councillors, members of the public, national and international press and media:

2. Their will be a reception gala inside the Bernie Grant’s Art Centre where an entertainment tribute and further speeches will take place. For more information contact the Bernie Grants Arts Centre on 0208 365 5450

3. The Nubian Jak Community Trust is the only national BME plaque and sculpture scheme in the UK

(General Enquiries 0800 093 0400) The Bernie Grant Community Tribute was organized by Nubian Jak Community Trust, in collaboration with the Haringey Council, Unison Trade Union, Lee Valley Estates, BTUC and the Grant Family. The unveiling will be attended by distinguish guests, local councillors, notable guests and members of the public, and media. Hall Approach, Tottenham, N15, 4RY

Reception Gala includes entertainment tributes from Rough Copy (2012 X Factor finalists), Carol Thompson, London Community Gospel Choir, Geoff Schumann, Black Arts Theatre Productions (BAP), Linton Kwesi Johnson, Gladesmore Community School singing Tottenham Anthem “Everybody Dreams”, and additional speeches, performances and tributes.

DATE: Sunday 28th October 2012, 4:30pm – 8:00pm VENUE: Bernie Grants Arts Centre, Town