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Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0074 LMA/4462/H
Held at: London Metropolitan Archives
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Date(s): 1979-2005
Level of description: Collection
Extent: 1.48 linear metres
Name of creator(s): Friends of Bogle | support group for Bogle-L'Ouverture publishing house


Administrative/Biographical history:

A loyal group of supporters worked closely with Bogle-L'Ouverture from it's inception in 1969. In 1979 they organised the 10th anniversary celebration of the publishing house and at that time they were already calling themselves 'Friends of Bogle'. In the minutes of 10/11/79 they are listed as Steve Lewis, Noreen Forbes, Maureen Stone, Anne Braithwaite, Rolston Callendar, Keith Waithe, Eric Huntley, Jessica Huntley, Leila, Leeland, Shirley, John and Errol.

In 1986 they drew up a constitution which defined clearly their aims and objectives. The committee were Tony Nelson, Anne Johnson, Steve lewis, Karlene Rickards, Claire Villaruel, Keith Waithe, Hazel Alexander, Jessica Huntley and Eric Huntley. The proposed aims were to:
- support the work of Bogle-L'Ouverture (publishing)
- co-operate with Jessica and Eric Huntley in organising poetry readings/book launchings and promotions and discussions on current events which bring more people in touch with the bookshop and with current cultural and political life.
- fund raise when possible
- in order to support the publishing.
- develop the practices of multi-culturalism through the promotion of crafts, education and cultural programmes,
- enrich the quality of life in Ealing by involving members of the community in creative activity.

The group's greatest support/achievement was in March 1991. An appeal to save Bogle-L'Ouverture was raised by Operation Headstart asking the 'African community to recognise the incalucuable services Sister Jessica and Brother Eric have made to our community for over a quarter of a century. The bookshop has closed and the publishing is under threat. The amount needed to re-start the company is estimated at 3,000 to 5,000. Donations to be sent to Friends of Bogle.'

In October 1996 a Business Plan was created with the following mission statement: Friends of Bogle is committed to:
- Developing a strong readership of African and Caribbean literature throughout the UK and other European countries.
- Providing a coherent structure which would allow potential writers of Afro-Caribbean literature the opportunity to publish their works.
- Securing adequate resources and create the environment to promote works of Black writers currently writing in the UK market.
- Working in partnership with other established publishers to enhance the readership of Afro-Caribbean literature.
- Ensure Friends of Bogle is recognised as a fully fledged publishing house.
- Secure a readership market world-wide over a period by carefully planned achievable targets.

By 1996 the group was responsible for publishing several mainstream writers and were associated with 'allowing the voices of Creole and other black dialects to be heard as never before in the the United Kingdom.' They had also published political writers whose work the mainstream press would have been reluctant to publish. Part of their established track record was the publication of 'Come From That Window Child, 'Child Race Class & Democracy' and 'A Hero'.

The group's skills were used to organise the following:
- 10th Anniversary celebration and a commemorative journal
- Saturday Supplementary School at Ealing Technical College,
- The Marcus Garvey Centenary Celebrations
- The Book Fair and the production of the record of performances
- A Conference in support of the Miners' Strike
- Support for the Newcross Massacre March
- Support to the ANC against the aparthied regime in South Africa
- The Walter Rodney Memorial lectures

Other Friends of Bogle Activities included trying to establish the:
- International Children's Bookfair Society. The Patrons of this group included Jessica Huntley and John Agard. They aimed to set up a children's fair to raise the standard of literature for young people.
- Carl Kirton's Culture World. The Friends made an application to create a video about the recording engineer Carl Kirton which chronicled his involvement in collecting records from Calypso to Jazz to contemporary music and his wider involvement in other cultural activities such as dance and poetry from other cultures notably Asian and Irish.

Marcus Garvey Centenary Celebrations:

Marcus Garvey a Black Jamaican writer, left the Caribbean to live in New York. There he became politicised and campaigned for Black people to be aware of their history. He advocated a return to Africa and created the Black Star Line shipping company.

This event was celebrated internationally and the Friends held a cultural extravaganza at Ealing Town Hall to mark the occasion. Part of their brief was not only to co-ordinate celebration events in Ealing but to make contact with other groups. They provided the Marcus Garvey exhibition boards which were displayed at the launch in Lambeth. They brought an international flavour to it by including Indian and Chilean entertainers. The Garvey biography for primary schools was completed and a second biography for secondary schools was placed on the forthcoming titles list.


Scope and content/abstract:

Records of Friends of Bogle, support group for Bogle-L'Ouverture publishing house. The minutes and agendas in LMA/4462/H/01/002 include fundraising projects such as a fun walk, funds for medical expenses for a young man from Yemen, the Walter Rodney Memorial speech by Manning Marable, 17/01/1986 minutes discuss the setting up of a constitution for Friends of Bogle. Setting up of the suplementary school, launch of the record 'Come From That Window Child' (19/07/1986 minutes), Setting up of the Saturday school at Ealing Technical College (31/10/1986).

The 'Walter Rodney Visions of Africa 1986' lecture was given by 'Ama Ata Aidoo. Contributors to the event included Mendy Joseph, Keith Waithe, Accabre Huntley, Alan Cooper, Eintou Springer and Margret and Sheila Thomas (LMA/4462/F/02/017).

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

This collection is arranged into six series:
LMA/4462/H/01 MINUTES;

Conditions governing access:

These records are available for public inspection, although records containing personal information may be subject to access restrictions.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copyright to these records rests with the depositors.

Finding aids:

Please see online catalogues at:

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Their archive collections were the first deposit from the African-Caribbean community to be made to the London Metropolitan Archives in 2005, with additional deposits since that time.

Allied Materials

Related material:

Publication note:

Description Notes

Archivist's note:

Rules or conventions:
Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:
November 2009 to February 2010

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