Thursday, February 22, 2007

Slave Trade Abolition Act

Memorial to William Wilberforce by his grave at Westminster Abbey, London

BBC Radio 4`s In Our Time marks the bicentenary of the Slave Trade Abolition Act.

Wilberforce was persuaded to lobby for the abolition of the slave trade and for 18 years he regularly introduced anti-slavery motions in Parliament. The campaign was supported by many members of the Clapham Sect and other abolitionists who raised public awareness of their cause with pamphlets, books, rallies and petitions.

In 1807, the slave trade was finally abolished, but this did not free those who were already slaves. It was not until 1833 that an Act was passed giving freedom to all slaves in the British Empire.

There is a very good website promoting the bi-centenary at Wilberforce Central