Black History Month is now an established part of the year and is celebrated all through October.
Whereas the celebrations of 2018 and 2019 were muted affairs, coming as they did in the middle of the
Windrush scandal, Black History Month 2020 feels more confident and celebratory than those of previous
years thanks in part to the remarkable events we have witnessed this year; namely the summer of the
Black Lives Matter movement.
In connection with the Black History Month, the curators at English Heritage unveiled a new portrait of
Sarah Forbes Bonetta, Queen Victoria's African goddaughter. The Queen met Bonetta, whose birthname
was believed to be Aina, several times at her seaside home Osborne on the Isle of Wight where the portrait
will be on display from 7 October. Queen Victoria was genuinely affected by the 'sharp and intelligent'
Bonetta, becoming her godmother and paying for her education.
The painting was commisioned to the artist Hannah Uzor as part of English Heritage project to display
paintings of black figures whose stories have previously been overlooked. Anna Eavis, curatorial director
of English Heritage said: "Black history is part of English history and while we know we have more to do,
English Heritage is committed to telling the story of England in full".
If you want to read more on the subject: www.english-heritage.org.uk