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The eight Windrush descendants to watch

MAKING AN IMPACT: Yrsa Daley-Ward and Akala

THERE’S A saying that I often come across on social media, and its “I am my ancestors wildest dreams.” There’s a lot of beauty in that statement and the idea of having the opportunity to live, succeed and go beyond what our ancestors could have even dream of .

For many black Brits, particularly descendants of the Windrush generation, this saying hits close to home. While the narrative has always suggested that later generations are often fragmented team their histories, we are seeing a seismic shift as more young people are engaging in intergenerational conversations and taking up the mantel for their elders.

For many Windrush descendants, they are their grandparents wildest dreams, and they're using their platforms to share their talents, passions and knowledge, whilst beaming with pride for where there family came from and what the future holds.

Below, we've list some of those descendants who are making moves in various industries, from law to theatre, and education to fashion.

Charlie Brinkhurst-Cuff

As head of editorial for gal-dem, Charlie Brinkhurst-Cuff has used her voice to highlight the injustices faced by the Windrush generation, and tell the stories of black and brown girls through her writing. Her book, Mother Country, explored the Windrush generation and featured contributions from David Lammy, Sharmaine Lovegrove, Hannah Lowe and Jamz Supernova to name a few.

Shakira Martin

As the president of the National Union of Students, Shakira Martin’s fiery nature and honest approach to education has been quite refreshing. Born to Jamaican parents, Martin has often used her platform to call out inequality and institutional racism within the educational sector and prides herself on saying it how it is. Watch out for this the mother-of-two, as she continues to shake up the system with her unfiltered views.

Lynette Linton

As the new artistic director of the Bush Theatre, Lynette Linton has already made history as the first black woman to hold the position. Linton uses her post to share stories of those from disadvantaged backgrounds, like Passages: A Windrush Celebration - seven filmed monologues commissioned by the Royal Court and curated by Linton to mark seven decades since the arrival of the Empire Windrush.

Jacqui McKenzie

This immigration lawyer has worked on a handful of WIndrush cases and is the founder of the Organisation of Migration Advice and Research. McKenzie has consistently used her platform to assist Windrush scandal victims and serves as a diversity consultant and member of the Windrush Lessons Learnt Review's Independent Advisory Group.

Natasha Gordon

Natasha Gordon is certainly one to watch in the British theatre. Her debut play Nine Night is a touching and funny exploration of the rituals of Caribbean families, as she displays her ability to create stories that speak to the Windrush generation and their descendants thereafter. Gordon has discussed how her Caribbean upbringing inspired her work and this is evident throughout Nine Night and we can’t wait to see more from her.

Grace Wales Bonner

Born to a British mother and Jamaican father, Grace Wales Bonner uses her work to interrogate notions of race and culture through design. Her exceptional womenswear has been hailed by Vogue and even worn by the Duchess of Sussex.

Yrsa Daley-Ward

While she is sometimes described as an ‘Instagram poet’, don’t let that definition distract from the beauty of Yrsa Daley-Ward writing. The West Indian and West African poet, writer and actor utilities social media like no other, and explores the beauty and hardships of the human experience. Check out her book ‘The Terrible’ to get a glimpse of what Ward has to offer.


The musician, author, educator and political activist continues to inspire many through his various talents and using his star power and influence to empower black Brits. From deconstructing race and class, to shedding light on the history of the impact of slavery throughout the world, Akala’s knowledge knows no bounds.

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