Following on from our partnership work with The National Caribbean Monument Charity (TNCMC) during our Black History Month, we were delighted when Donald Campbell, and the wider TNCMC team, joined our Sixth Form assembly to explain the motivation and objectives behind their fund-raising.

Sixth Formers Nicole McDonald and Bintou Secka first contacted TNCMC as part of Black History Week last October when they presented the National Memorial Arboretum with letters written by Friary students in support of the work they do. Indeed, these letters have since gone to MPs across the Houses of Parliament and have helped pave the way for the charity to meet with MPs over the next month.

The charity aims to uphold and remember the sacrifices and contributions made by Caribbean people in the British military, and to create a legacy for present and future generations, by funding a commemorative memorial to all who served and died for Britain and the wider Commonwealth.

Looking forward, the Sixth Form have selected TNCMC as their charity for the coming academic year and will be working with Mr Campbell and his colleagues to provide support in reaching their goal of raising £500,000 to ensure the monument is designed, built and installed at the arboretum.

In a packed Sixth Form Centre this morning the TNCMC explained the importance of Caribbean military personnel and the significance of the proposed monument, before taking part in a lively question and answer session with students.

They also presented the school with a framed poem written about Private Herbert Morris, a young soldier shot at dawn in 1917. Private Morris was the only representation of Caribbean soldiers at the Arboretum before the TNCMC began their work.

Carrie Cain, Assistant Headteacher, said: “We were thrilled to have the TNCMC team in school and passionately support the cause for recognition of those from the Caribbean who served all our interests. Our students enjoy working with the group and when the monument is in situ we want to feel that we have played a small part in making it happen”.