Socialist Worker

Let’s party against the racists at Notting Hill Carnival

Issue No. 2568

Notting Hill is a chance for people to try and recover after the horrors of Grenfell...

Notting Hill is a chance for people to try and recover after the horrors of Grenfell... (Pic: Angel Ganev)


Love Music Hate Racism will be part of this year’s Notting Hill Carnival event in west London.

...but the police crackdown is in full swing, as it is every year

...but the police crackdown is in full swing, as it is every year (Pic: Guy Smallman)


On Sunday the anti-racist organisation is organising a float in collaboration with carnival legend Smokey Joe.

The float is sponsored by the RMT rail workers’ union.

Over 2 million people attend the event across the whole weekend each year.

Carnival’s roots go back to a 1959 indoor event at St Pancras town hall, organised by Trinidadian Marxist Claudia Jones as a defiant response to race riots the year before.

It moved to Notting Hill as an outdoor parade in 1965.

Atmosphere

This year it takes place in the context of the Grenfell Tower fire. Recent killings of black men by police and the rise in Islamophobia from the ruling class have also fed the toxic atmosphere of racism.

Police arrested at least 26 people in “pre-emptive” raids on Tuesday.

Carnival will be a welcome chance to let off steam. In a statement, Love Music Hate Racism said it serves as a “reminder that there is more that unites us than divides us”.

On Monday at carnival there is a minute’s silence at 3pm to remember the dead of Grenfell. People are also being asked to wear green.

The bank holiday weekend also sees the first Govanhill International Carnival in Glasgow. Nicola Sturgeon and Jeremy Corbyn are both set to take part.

For more about LMHR’s float in London, go to bit.ly/2wgLlc6 and for Glasgow, bit.ly/2vBKS1o

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