Windrush 75 | Celebrating 75 Years of the Windrush Generation

On 22 June 1948, HMT Empire Windrush arrived in the UK, carrying over 1,000 passengers from the West Indies.

Consisting of former service personnel, this was the first wave of post war immigration. Many of the passengers aboard the ship that day – as well as their descendants – helped support the establishment of the NHS, which launched two weeks later. Their descendants continue to work in the NHS and social care in Derby and Derbyshire, helping to care for local people.

The journey of the early Black and minority ethnic colleagues in the NHS, and in British society, was not an easy one. Faced with overt racism, discrimination and public outcry, they were not always welcome. The same experiences were faced by those who followed over the next few decades.

Windrush Day was formally launched in 2018 and is an opportunity for communities across the UK to celebrate the contribution of the Windrush Generation and their descendants. As well as celebrating the contribution of the Windrush Generation to the NHS, Windrush Day is an opportunity to recognise the support the NHS has received from people from across the world over the last 75 years, including today’s workforce which currently represents over 200 nationalities.