In June 1948, a ship called the Empire Windrush arrived in London, carrying 492 people from the Caribbean, travelling to England to start a new life in the ‘Mother Country’. With sections of urban Britain reduced to rubble by the end of the Second World War, the British government recruited from its’ colonies to help ‘rebuild’ Britain. This meant that there was a dramatic increase in the flow of migrants from across the British colonies. Many passengers on Empire Windrush were responding to recruitment campaigns, filling staff shortages in the NHS, schools, construction and transport, whilst others made the journey to find work on their own.
The Windrush ship has become symbolic for the 278,000 Caribbean men, women and children who migrated to Britain between 1948 and 1962.