Windrush Day

All NEW! Windrush Day takes place on June 22nd to remember the day in 1948 when 492 people from the Caribbean arrived in England on the ship, Empire Windrush. Learn a little about the Empire Windrush and Windrush Day and explore our collection of learning resources - for home or school - below.

What is Windrush Day?

During World War Two, many people were killed and buildings destroyed. Britain was having to rebuild, but after the casualties of war there was a shortage of workers. The British government advertised in the Caribbean that there was work available, and invited men, women and children to come.  Many people in the Caribbean had heard about Great Britain and were excited to see it, and to build a new life here.

The Empire Windrush, a passenger ship, left the Caribbean and travelled thousands of miles to dock on June 22nd at Tilbury Docks in Essex. It brought the first large group of West Indian immigrants to Britain.

The Empire Windrush
The Empire Windrush

Sadly, when those first people arrived, they didn’t always get the friendly welcome that they had hoped for. Many of them experienced racism and found it difficult to find proper homes. Some were excluded from clubs and churches too.

An estimated 500,000 people answered adverts to come to the UK between 1948-1971. They are all called the Windrush Generation.

The Windrush Scandal

In 2012, there was a change to our immigration laws which meant that everyone needed official documentation to live here. Some people who had been invited to Britain, but had not been given documentation at the time, were wrongly told that they were living here illegally. Some were deported, and more were facing deportation!

In 2018, Theresa May, the Prime Minister at the time, apologised to the citizens that had been forced to leave and confirmed that anyone who was part of the Windrush Generation were here legally. The government decided that 22nd June would become Windrush Day – a day to celebrate the contribution of the Windrush Generation and their descendants.

Our Windrush Resources

Caribbean Venn Diagram

Caribbean Venn Diagram

Use this Venn diagram printable to compare and contrast life in the Caribbean and in the UK after the Second World War.

Empire Windrush Colouring Page

Empire Windrush Colouring Page

Colour in this picture of His Majesty's Transport Empire Windrush - the ship that brought the first group of people from the Caribbean to make their lives in the UK, in 1948.

Empire Windrush Research Worksheet

Empire Windrush Research Worksheet

The Empire Windrush is most famous for its journey in 1948, but it had an interesting history. The kids can use this worksheet to do some research to discover it more about the story of this passenger ship.

Empire Windrush Story Paper

Empire Windrush Story Paper

Use this story paper to encourage some writing about the Empire Windrush, which had an interesting history! Alternatively children could write about its passengers to Tilbury Docs in 1948, or the story of the Windrush Generation.

Interviewing the Windrush Generation

Interviewing the Windrush Generation

This interesting worksheet does more than ask children to come up with questions to ask someone from the Windrush Generation. It asks them to put themselves into the position of an official interviewer, and ask questions that the audience would be interested in too.

Mapping Empire Windrush

Mapping Empire Windrush

The Empire Windrush had a long and interesting journey from the Caribbean to the UK in 1948. Can you plot the journey on the map?

Packing for the Windrush Worksheet

Packing for the Windrush Worksheet

Can you imagine packing up your whole life to start a new one in another country, with just a suitcase? We ask children to imagine what they would take with them if they were making a journey like the Windrush Generation.

Windrush Advertisement

Windrush Advertisement

Britain needed help rebuilding after World War II, and the government placed adverts in newspapers in Jamaica to encourage people to move here for work and a new life.

Windrush Comprehension

Windrush Comprehension

Read the text to learn about the Empire Windrush, the Windrush Generation and Windrush Day, and then answer the questions.

Windrush diary worksheet

Windrush Diary Worksheet

There are two options on this Windrush diary worksheet. Students can either write an entry about the journey on Windrush and their first impressions of Britain when they arrived in Essex. Alternatively, write an entry comparing life in the Carribean to life in 1948 Britain.

Windrush Generation Colouring Page

Windrush Generation Colouring Page

This colouring page shows the first group of Caribbean men, women and children disembarking from Empire Windrush at Tilbury Docks in Essex, to make their new lives in the UK.

Windrush Generation Story Paper

Windrush Generation Story Paper

Children can use this story paper to write what they have learned about the Windrush Generation - or perhaps for some creative writing based on someone they can see in the picture?

More History for Kids

The Titanic
The Titanic

The Caribbean

You can learn about the islands of the Caribbean in our Around the World section...


Around the World
Around the World

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