Black History Month South presents: The Windrush Generation: Still Sitting in Limbo

PUBLISHED : June 1, 2023

WORDS : Don John

This highly successful event was sold out with standing room only and was an important statement highlighting the serious implications of the “Hostile Environment” engendered by the government.

June 22nd marked the 75th anniversary of the arrival of the Empire Windrush into Tilbury Docks in the UK, and June 8th marked three years since the original broadcast of the BAFTA winning BBC drama Sitting in Limbo. The drama was based on the experience of Anthony Bryan, one of the victims of the Windrush Scandal. Sitting in Limbo was written by Anthony’s brother, novelist, and screenwriter Stephen S Thompson. This special Windrush event not only recognised the legacy of the Windrush generation but acknowledged the serious issues that people of the Windrush generation experienced; stimulated by the “hostile environment” engendered by the authorities.

Patrick Robinson, Pippa Bennett-Warner & Don John at the event.

Patrick Vernon, a leading campaigner for justice for victims of the Windrush Scandal and Convenor of the Windrush 75 Network was present, as well as Anthony Bryan, his partner Janet McKay-Williams and actor Patrick Robinson, who played Anthony Bryan together with Pippa Bennett-Warner who played his daughter in the BBC drama Sitting in Limbo. There were also contributions from local people of the Windrush generation such as Beverley Dowdell and Vilma Scott and members of Black Heritage Southampton and the Wednesday Luncheon Club, charitable organisations that promote the social wellbeing of local Caribbean communities. The Director Stella Corradi and ExecutiveProducer Lila Rawlings were also present.

A still from the BBC production, Sitting in Limbo.

The BBC drama was written by Steven Thompson the brother of Anthony Bryan who lectured at Winchester University and lived in Southampton before he sadly passed on May 26th, 2022. Also, a special thanks to Kass Boucher for helping to make this event happen.

June 8th 2023, 6-9pm, John Hansard Gallery

142, 144 Above Bar St, Southampton SO14 7DU