Hackney's Windrush Generations Festival wins ‘Best Arts Project – Community Cohesion’ in the Hearts for the Arts Awards 2020

Hearts for the Arts, the UK’s annual celebration to recognise the heroes of community arts, has awarded Hackney Council ‘Best Arts Project – Community Cohesion’ for its 2019 Windrush Generations Festival. The win comes after this week’s news that the festival won global recognition at the Apolitical awards for ‘championing equality’. 

The awards celebrate the unsung heroes of Local Authorities and were judged by high-profile figures in the arts and sciences including Susie Dent, Gary Kemp, Julie Hesmondhalgh, Alom Shaha, Errollyn Wallen, Kirstie Wilson and Samuel West. 

Hackney is home to hundreds, if not thousands, of people from the Windrush generation. The annual festival aims to celebrate and honour the valuable contribution they bring to the borough through a series of intergenerational events from cricket matches, baking days and tea parties. Through a variety of inclusive events, Windrush elders can connect with one another and give young people an opportunity to learn from their legacy. 

Cllr Carole Williams,Cabinet Member for Employment, Skills and Human Resources, said: 

Cllr Carole Williams, Cabinet Member for Employment, Skills and Human Resources
 “I am immensely proud that Hackney Council won the Hearts for the Arts community cohesion award for the 2019 Windrush Day programme. Less than two years ago, Hackney became the first local authority in the UK to pass a comprehensive Windrush motion. Since then we have held two annual events to commemorate the contribution Hackney's Windrush Generation has made. Honouring Windrush has never felt more crucial. Two years on from the scandal, we remain committed to supporting those families that have been affected, while showing that Hackney is a welcoming place for all migrant communities.

"Plans are underway for yet another unforgettable Windrush Generations Festival 2020. I also look forward to the outcome of the consultation on the commission of a public Windrush artwork which will be on permanent display in the Town Hall Square in 2021."
Cllr Carole Williams, Cabinet Member for Employment, Skills and Human Resources


The Hearts For The Arts winners have been announced by the National Campaign for the Arts' (NCA) with an award to be presented by Samuel West at the Local Government Association’s Annual Culture and Tourism Conference 2020, on 2 March. 

Notes for editors: 

To find out more on Hackney Council’s Windrush motion and how to access support for undocumented migrants.

View the full programme of last year's Windrush Generation Festival

Find out more about the Windrush Artwork Commission. 

For the full list of winners visit forthearts.org.uk/campaigns/hearts-for-the-arts/ 

To read more about the project visit: forthearts.org.uk/hfta-2020-best-arts-project- community-cohesion-winner-windrush-generations-festival/ 

The National Campaign for the Arts present the Hearts For The Arts Awards each year. The awards are delivered by UK Theatre, in partnership with Culture Counts; the Local Government Association; Thrive; Theatre NI, Voluntary Arts Wales, Wales Council for Voluntary Action 

Hearts For The Arts is a National Campaign for the Arts initiative, delivered by UK Theatre, in partnership with Culture Counts; the Local Government Association; Theatre NI; Thrive; Voluntary Arts Wales; and Wales Council for Voluntary Action. 

The National Campaign for the Arts (NCA) is a charity and independent campaigning organisation, run by a board of volunteer trustees. They campaign for more investment in the arts, to improve the lives of everyone; and they champion those who make that happen. forthearts.org.uk 

UK Theatre is the UK’s leading theatre and performing arts membership organisation – promoting excellence, professional development, and campaigning to improve resilience and increase audiences across the sector. uktheatre.org