Rename Colston Road in Mortlake.

Rename Colston Road in Mortlake.

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Isabel Pullman started this petition to Richmond Council

Edward Colston was a slave trader who was head of the Royal African Company. During his time with the company, they transported an estimated 84,000 men, women and children. The names of these individuals are largely unknown today however, Colston's name is memorialised throughout the UK. The statue in Bristol memorialising him was torn down yet there are other remnants of him around. 

For example, Colston Road in Mortlake is named after him due to his multiple charitable acts in the area. He founded a number of Almshouses which serve to take care of vulnerable people. The key point here is that these charitable acts were designed to take care of white people. On one hand, you have a man contributing to the torture and deaths of thousands of black individuals, whilst maintaining a 'good' and 'charitable' reputation through his actions towards white individuals. 

Regardless of how much charity work he did in the UK, it does not remove his role in the slave trade. The individuals transported were branded with the letters RAC on their chests, they were tightly packed in unsanitary conditions and split apart from those they loved and knew. 

This petition is not to say we shouldn't remember Edward Colson because we should. But we should remember him for his role in the exploitation and enslavement of thousands of individuals. This means we should not be celebrating him with statues and we should not have roads named after him. These are honours that should be bestowed upon those who have contributed more good than harm, which cannot be said for a man who's fortune was made with the blood of others. 

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