Black History Month

Cheshire FA Celebrates Black History Month

Steve Smithies, Cheshire FA CEO
Cheshire FA CEO, Steve Smithies, explores the importance of Black History Month.

October 1 marks the start of Black History Month, a month of awareness that Cheshire FA is proud to support.

At the start of 2021's month of education and awareness, Steve Smithies, Cheshire FA CEO, explores what the month is and why it’s important...

Every year, the month of October is dedicated to raising awareness and commemorating black history in the UK. Since 1987, it has been a vitally important celebration of what black history is and the contributions black people have made to British society.

The celebration first originated in London, after a special projects officer from Greater London Council, Akyaaba Addai Sebo, ventured to the U.S.A in the 1970s. Once Akyaaba recognised that the Black History Month concept had such a substantial and positive impact on recognising black history, he founded the UK version. This coincided with a time when community activism was challenging systemic racism within British society and the need for substantial change through this movement.

It was originally recognised that October would be a suitable month, as it was the month known for African chiefs and leaders gathering to understand their differences. Akyaaba recognised that this was the month to reconnect with African roots. Given that October is at the beginning of the school year, this was also considered when dictating the month to celebrate black history; this would enlighten black children with a sense of pride and identity entering the rest of the school year and raise awareness amongst their white classmates.

As well as promoting and celebrating the black contribution to British society, Black History Month also showcases an understanding of what black history is in general.

Within the UK, black people have played an important role in history, yet there’s still a clear lack of representation within history books and teachings throughout British academia and other educational settings.

Therefore, it’s imperative to celebrate and remember those people that helped shape and build the United Kingdom. This is a great opportunity to honour and recognise the neglected accomplishments and history of black people in the UK going as far back as the early 16th century.

During this month-long initiative, schools dedicate time to the teaching of black history and the importance of key influential black men and women. This includes the history of the many black people who fought, served and died for their country in World War One and World War Two.

Black History Month provides a fantastic opportunity to raise awareness and to celebrate the outstanding contributions people of African and Caribbean descent have made to our country over many generations.

Cheshire FA are looking forward to our event on October 11, when we will be celebrating the achievements of black, Asian and mixed heritage people within football and recognising their positive contribution to our society.  

If you would like to find out further information about our event please email