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The Mural Reading UK

The smile says it all...

The Black community of Reading has made a documentary of the Black History Mural through the eyes of six Reading community leaders and a resident. The documentary will be premiered at 19:30 hrs on 6th November 2020. Due to the new Covid19 restrictions, the venue has changed from the theatre to our digital platform at Aspire has applied for the Blacks History Mural to be listed by Historic England, it will be the first piece of Black Public Art or Monument by a Black artist to be listed anywhere in the United Kingdom. What a glorious outcome that will be in the zeitgeist of Black Lives Matter knowing that every month should be Black History Month.

Aspire Media Release

For Immediate Release: 28 October 2020

Reading‘s Black History Mural documentary to be premiered on 6 November 2020.

An emotionally charged documentary about the iconic Black History Mural (BHM) and what it means to the people of Reading will be Premiered on digital media at 19:30 on 6 November 2020. The documentary was made with the support of Reading Council and Historic England, who are supporting Aspire’s application for the BHM to be listed by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport as a heritage site.

The documentary is directed by Tianna Banton, an up and coming Black graduate from the University of the Arts, London. Ms. Banton said: "To create this film about a piece of art that holds such significance to not just me but my community. With everything going on in the world right now surrounding the black community; to know that I was a part of creating something that will help uplift us as a collective and highlight this mural's importance and our history is the highlight of my career".

The Black History Mural was livicated more than 30 years ago. The producer Keith Kerr of Aspire said: The story of this Totem for the diaspora is a standard-bearer for the wider Reading community, that needed to be captured for prosperity.

The Black History Mural depicts the struggle Black people have endured and overcome in our long march to freedom. The Black History Mural reminds us that while a battle may have been won, the war goes on for us. The standard-bearers must remain vigilant to the ever-changing landscape of the battlefield, so they can rally and redirect which action should be taken on the field. The diaspora has made at least three attempts to acquire the site from Reading Borough Council but each attempt was blocked.

The documentary was filmed in Risc in London Street, Reading with several locals contributing. The speakers included one of the mural painters, community leaders, a Reading Councillor, a businessman, and a local resident. They all gave their personal perspective of what the Black History Mural means to them. The documentary will create a huge interest in the people and places depicted in the Black History Mural. Cllr Bob White a long-time supporter said: “It gave me a tingle down my spine, it made him feel proud“.

Aspire Media will launch the Black History Mural documentary with supporting online content including a digital museum, a Reading Slave Link Tour Guide, and a quiz. The suite of programmes are designed to Engage, Enlighten, Educate, and Entertain our stakeholders about the diaspora long association with Reading and its environs.

To see the trailer visit our website at from 18:30 hrs on 31 October 2020.

Notes for Editor

1. Aspire (Reading) CIC is a Community Interest Company registered by the Caribbean Associations Group

2. Aspire submitted and had accepted a listing application to Historic England on 14 September 2020

3. The Black History Mural was livicated 30 years on l 6 June 1990

4. Contact: Keith Kerr Tel: 07768 620446 email: Aspire (Reading) CIC

Please pop over to the Aspire website for more information

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