Celebrate Gypsy, Roma and Traveller History Month in Hackney

Explore the history, culture and language of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities in Hackney next month and find out more about the borough’s history.

Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities across Britain will be celebrating the second GRTHM in June 2009 to raise awareness and explore history of the largest Ethnic Minority community in the European Union.

Britain’s 300,000 Gypsies, Roma and Travellers have lived, worked and travelled throughout Britain for over 500 years, yet little is known about their history and culture. The result is a widespread ignorance about who they are, which sometimes turns to hatred, fear and misunderstanding.

Throughout the month, Hackney Libraries, together with the Travellers Education Service, the London Gypsy and Traveller Unit and Hackney Museum, will be holding a series of entertaining, interactive family events to help raise awareness of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities in the borough.

Highlights include the Passing Places exhibition and GRTHM launch event at Hackney Museum; a book launch by Alan Gibbons, award winning author of teenage fiction; and an exciting prize draw quiz for children.

Councillor Nargis Khan, Cabinet Member for Community Services, said: “Hackney has a wonderfully diverse community that we are keen to share and celebrate. I urge everyone to join us and be part of the national celebrations for Gypsy, Roma and Traveller History Month to find out more about Hackney’s vibrant history.”

As part of the GRTHM celebrations in Hackney, there will also be an exhibition showcasing the work of Traveller and Roma children; a fun evening of Irish Traveller entertainment with live music, dance and poetry presented by ‘Shishe Gawth lyitchen’; and the Travellers Past, Present and Future Q & A session.

Events take place at Hackney Museum, Hackney Central Library and Homerton Library.

For more information call Hamida Mulla, Homerton Library or Adrian Morris on 020 8356 3000 - please say name of the person and the library you wish to speak to. Or visit the Council’s website: