An archival photograph showing three carribean nurses

An archival photograph showing three Carribean nurses

A lottery-funded project to celebrate the experiences of retired Caribbean nurses in Hackney and Newham will hold its inaugural gathering this month at an event at the Vortex jazz club featuring poetry and live music.

Thirty nurses from Hackney and Newham interviewed for the oral history project are some of thousands who were recruited from the Caribbean to bolster the then-nascent NHS, arriving in the UK between 1949-1968.

“The nurses were very keen to attend and themselves welcome having something like this,” said Beverley Davis from project organisers Black Arts Women, an East London arts charity established in 1993 to promote black women in arts and entertainment.

“It brings them back to when they were younger and doing this kind of work and really loved nursing. It reminds them of their passion.”

Only nurses from the two boroughs will be interviewed for the project, which culminates in a five-month exhibition at Hackney Museum launching on 11 September.

Retired Caribbean Nurses was launched in October 2013 by partners London Metropolitan Archives and is supported by the Lottery Heritage Fund.

The Vortex event will take place on 22 March.

To find out more or get involved contact project officer Glenor Roberts on or on 020 8520 9401

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