Home Markets London’s finance district, steeped in slavery, confronts its past

London’s finance district, steeped in slavery, confronts its past

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LONDON, Oct 6 (Reuters) – British ships ferried over 3 million enslaved African people across the Atlantic Ocean. Lloyd’s of London insured many of those vessels, the people chained below deck sometimes categorized as “perishable goods”, alongside cattle, by the market’s underwriters.

Lloyd’s involvement in the trans-Atlantic slave trade is not included in the market’s permanent exhibition at its modernistic City tower but that is set to change.

“The legacy of slavery is racism. You can’t do what you have to do to make slavery work unless you constitute the enslaved people as less than human,” said Nick Draper, a former JPMorgan banker who was founding director of the Centre for the Study of the Legacies of British Slavery (LBS) at University College London

“We did it on the basis of ethnicity, race and skin colour. It’s embedded in British and European culture – that’s what we are working through now.”

Along with other financial institutions in…

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