Our Remembrance Focus Week followed on from our Black History Week, and we were fortunate to tie the two themes together in support of an important project designed to honour and respect the contribution of Caribbean soldiers to the British war effort during the First and Second World Wars.

Our Black History Week examined the absence of a monument to Caribbean soldiers at the National Arboretum – as we worked with a guest speaker who relayed the importance and significance of the commemoration to Sikh soldiers during the First World War.

Sixth Formers Nicole McDonald and Bintou Secka led a campaign to raise awareness of the lack of this monument – which fund-raising organisations and the National Arboretum are seeking to address. After helping with the laying of the school wreath as part of the Remembrance services, they presented letters, written by students from across the school, to Peter Orgill calling for the formal recognition of Caribbean soldiers who died fighting for the British Empire.

Our school has been active in supporting the Free Spirit campaign to raise funds for a monument to recognise the service of horses in war – recently supporting the musical performances at the event at Lichfield Cathedral – but the recognition of Caribbean soldiers stands out as a must for national and commemorative respect.

Our campaign work in this area has been appreciated by Donald Campbell who is co-ordinating the National Caribbean Memorial fund-raising scheme and we are looking forward to working with them more in the future. Further details about their project can be seen at: www.thenationalcaribbeanmemorial.com.  Alternatively, if you wish to donate to this project visit: https://www.justgiving.com/nationalcaribbeanmonument.

Carrie Cain, Assistant Headteacher, said: “We have welcomed the support of the National Arboretum and the campaign groups around the Caribbean Memorial in supporting our view that a monument to Caribbean soldiers is an important addition to our national war memorial at Alrewas. Our students have valued taking on this campaign and message forward and it had been valuable experience for everyone involved.”