Two statues of slaves owners are to be taken down from the City of London.
Statues of William Beckford and Sir John Cass will be removed from the Guildhall building in Moorgate. During the Black Lives Matter protests last summer, a task force was set up which called for the immediate removal of statues with historic links to slavery. The City of London Corporation has now voted to taken down the statues of two slave owners from the Square Mile.
In June 2020, a public petition circulated calling for the removal of the William Beckford monument, the largest slave owner in the 1760s – however, the government rejected the petition, claiming it was an issue for the local authority. And now, things are changing.
The corporation will also commission a new memorial that instead acknowledges the victims of the slave trade.
The co-chair of the taskforce, Caroline Addy, said “The slave trade is a strain on our history and putting those who profited from it literally on a pedestal is something that has no place in a modern, diverse City.”