TV presenter Alison Hammond shines a spotlight on important Black British figures, past and present in a new book for young readers called Black in Time: The Most Awesome Black Britons from Yesterday to Today.
The Black in Time book by Alison Hammond and children’s author Emma Norry, is aimed at primary school aged young readers and how Black History is British history. The book, vibrantly illustrated by @Tinuke.illustration, is an informative and entertaining combination of fact files, narrative stories and interviews that highlights the immense contribution Black people have and continue to make to British society.
In 2020, we watched how Alison was visibly impacted by the murder of George Floyd and the rise of #BLM protests around the world. During an appearance on This Morning, where she is one of the presenters, Alison spoke openly about her own experiences of racism and marginalisation of Black people in the UK. Later that year, she hosted Alison Hammond: Back to School, the ITV documentary on important Black British figures who have been ignored by history curriculum in the UK.
Clearly passionate about raising awareness of the contribution of Black people, Black in Time is a wonderful opportunity to take this awareness to young readers, the next generation. Black in Time readers will learn about people who have done incredible things yet remain largely unknown from the world of science, sports, the arts, politics and more. Not just about the past, Black in Time also features interviews with Black Britons of today, with the likes of Nicola Adams and Malorie Blackman sharing views on Black British history and what we can learn from it.
On why she decided to be involved with Black in Time, Alison explained that too many important Black people are unknown. Addressing the young readers that are the target of the book, Alison said: “How many Black people can you name from our history? Mary Seacole? Ira Aldridge? George Bridgetower? Pablo Fanque? Walter Tull? Have you heard of these people?
“Yes? That’s great! But if you haven’t, don’t worry, you’re not alone, which is why I’m so excited to tell you all about them. Because the people in this book should be totally famous given the AMAZING things they’ve done! And we’re not going to stop in the past, I’ll introduce you to people making waves right here and now!”
As we often say, representation matters and so it’s important that young people, who will be our future leaders, are able to see the contributions of Black people in the pages of this important new book, from sportspeople, scientists, activists to musicians, politicians to writers, it’s time the spotlight shines on the people who have helped shape the world we live in.
Black in Time: The Most Awesome Black Britons from Yesterday to Today is published on 9 June 2022.