Wimbledon Lecture Will Highlight Work Of William Wilberforce

Anti-slavery campaigner used to live in Wimbledon

William Morris House in Wimbledon will be hosting the fourth William Morris lecture on September 17. 

This year it will highlighting the work of renowned local resident William Wilberforce who started to campaign against the evil of slavery here in Wimbledon around 250 years ago.

The lecture will be given by the Rt Hon Frank Field MP DL. He was asked by the Home Secretary to Chair of the Modern Slavery Bill Evidence Review Group, which laid the ground for the passing of the Modern Slavery Act 2015.

The William Morris lecture is sponsored by William Morris House, and seeks to promote the radical history of Wimbledon, and to sustain the artistic and political legacy of Morris, who left such a rich cultural heritage in Wimbledon.

William Wilberforce, who campaigned to abolish slavery lived in Lauriston House, Wimbledon. A plaque commemorating his time in the area can still be seen on the stable block in Wimbledon (Lauriston House has been demolished).

In 1789 Wilberforce spoke in the House of Commons arguing that slavery was a matter of great injustice and contrary to principles of human dignity. He was defeated but he continued to speak and campaign for the next 40 years.  Eventually, on 26 July 1833, just a few days before his death, Wilberforce heard the news that, the Slavery Abolition Act was passed.

For those who wish to attend this free event, which starts at 8pm, tickets will be sent on on a first come first served basis.  Please contact manager.wmhouse@gmail.com or telephone Caspar on 0208 542 3049.

September 3, 2015