Black volunteers represented in RAF ‘Pilots of the Caribbean’ exhibition

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Mayors from the London boroughs of Brent, Croydon, Islington, Kensington and Southwark visited the Royal Air Force (RAF) Museum in Colindale, North London, to see a new exhibition, curated in partnership with the Black Cultural Archives, celebrating and commemorating the role black personnel played in the two world wars, Jane Denton reports for Kensington and Chelsea Today.

The exhibition, entitled ‘Pilots of the Caribbean: Volunteers of African heritage in the Royal Air Force’, tells the stories of black people from the Caribbean, Africa and the UK who served as volunteers in the Royal Air Force and reveals their contributions to the defence of Britain, the Commonwealth and former British Empire.

As well as telling the stories of black personnel who volunteered with the RAF, the exhibition also aims to highlight the RAF’s continued success in embracing diversity and welcoming new generations of black volunteers into its ranks. Speaking about the Mayoral visits and museum exhibition, RAF Museum curator, Peter Devitt, said, “We are delighted to host this visit with the Mayors from several London boroughs and the feedback we received from them was both positive and heart-warming. The RAF was the first military service to take on board the issue of diversity and the exhibition, which tells the story of the brave black volunteers over time, has been exceptionally popular with visitors. As a result, it has been decided to display ‘Pilots of the Caribbean’ permanently at RAF Museum Cosford”.

Entry to the Royal Air Force Museum in Colindale, North London is free and the ‘Pilots of the Caribbean’ exhibition runs until 22nd April 2014. For more information on the RAF Museum London and ‘Pilots of the Caribbean’ exhibition visit http://www.rafmuseum.org.uk or call 020 8205 2266

For the original report go to http://www.kensingtonandchelseatoday.co.uk/arts-and-culture/exhibitions/fqxgr44kt4.html

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