‘It’s important people don’t lose interest’: 1000 people turn out for All Black Lives Matter march

Yesterday’s march had a particular emphasis on failures in the education system.

Yesterday approximately 1000 All Black Lives Matter protesters marched through Bristol city centre from College Green to Castle Park.

The march pinned a heavy focus on recent and long-standing failures within the education system that severely impact black people.

The All Black Lives Matter group is different from Black Lives Matter, but organisers say they share the same goals.

The march took protesters from College Green to Castle Park through the city centre.

The protesters marched through Cabot Circus shopping centre chanting “No justice. No Peace” and “White silence is violence”.

Shoppers and shop workers stopped to clap the marchers as they made their way through the centre.

Bristol’s previous Black Lives Matter protest in June saw the tearing down of the statue of slave trader Edward Colston, and hosted an estimated 10,000 people.

While the motivations behind each march remained the same, yesterday saw a particular emphasis on the failure of the education system in reaction to the recent disappointments caused by predicted A-Level results.

At Castle Park, protesters sat down and listened to speeches from activists, “The private school sector had the biggest increase in A-A* grades.” one of the speakers said, “If you can explain to me why that is, without mentioning race or social class, I’m going to season up my Durag real nice and eat it live on stage”

The march ended with rousing speeches and performances in Castle Park.

Protesters also heard from the famous Bristol poet Lawrence Hoo, who performed his poem “I wish” for the crowd. The poem followed the same theme of injustices within the education system.

“The history I was taught helped fill me with anger and pain / because it taught me my ancestors were slaves with no name.”

Some protesters brought placards and wore masks during the march.

The crowd also heard speeches on police brutality and racism. Jacob, a 17 year old dance student and activist in attendance, told The Bristol Tab: “We’re still fighting for basic human rights. This movement impacts a whole population of people and it’s incredibly important people don’t lose interest.

“It’s still happening now. Only a few weeks ago there was a disgusting racist attack in Southmead, and we need to protest until racism everywhere is gone. There’s loads of people who don’t realise how bad it is, even to this day.”

All photos: Jake Loader

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