-Lancaster slave trade port to Fairtrade City
25th/26th March 2017
The FIG Tree was awarded a grant of £52,500 from the Heritage Lottery Fund in 2015 to explore Lancaster’s role in the slave trade during the 18th century, as well as the area’s involvement in promoting fair trade today. To celebrate the end of the project, an exciting weekend of events took place on 25th/26th March 2017, commemorating 210 years since the act was passed to abolish the British Transatlantic slave trade. As part of ‘210 Abolition – Lancaster slave trade port to Fairtrade City’ several events took place in Lancaster including a Regency Banquet and Ball at the Borough; services, a lecture and chocolate workshops at The Priory; and Quaker worship and slave trade / Fair Trade Debate at the Friends Meeting House. The abolition of the slave trade act was passed exactly 210 years earlier on 25th March 1807.
Bruce Crowther MBE, Executive Director of the FIG Tree said, “The slave trade abolitionist message was ‘It is simply immoral that people should be allowed to suffer in order to provide us with luxuries such as tea, coffee and sugar at a cheap price’ and sadly that message is still true today. There are people in Ghana growing cocoa for our chocolate that do not have access to clean drinking water and this is simply immoral. We can change this however, by buying Fair Trade products.”
In addition to the ‘210 Abolition’ weekend a walk from Pooley Bridge to Grasmere took place on Saturday 15th April as part of The International Festival Of Fair Trade Walks. This branch of the Fair Trade Way from Garstang to Keswick will retrace the steps of poet William Wordsworth returning to his home at Dove Cottage after visiting his friend and fellow abolitionist Thomas Clarkson at Eusemere Lodge. It will pass by the site that inspired Wordsworth’s most famous work ‘I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud’ exactly 215 years after Wordsworth came across the “long belt” of daffodils with his sister Dorothy.
Information at Brucecrowther300@gmail.com
Tel: 01995 602637