Archive for the 'Remembering Olive' Category


Lambeth’s plans for Olive Morris House

This blog has been dormant for some time but I feel the need to re-start it due to Lambeth Council’s proposals to develop Olive Morris House  under its new SDP plans.  Many of you won’t be aware of Lambeth’s plans as they appear to have been rushed through with the minimum of community consultation.   Please see and also

I want to ensure that any future plans retain the memory of Olive’s contribution and that she continues to be suitably honoured and I will therefore be keeping a close eye on the plans for Olive Morris House

I will be posting updates on how we can influence the planned proposals.  Please watch this space.


The Olive Morris Memorial Awards Ceremony- 2 December! RSVP today

The Olive Morris Memorial Awards have been organised by the Remembering Olive Collective (ROC) to celebrate the legacy of black woman activist Olive Morris. The Awards were created as an opportunity to celebrate the spirit of Olive Morris as it lives on in the work of a new generation of young women activists.

Women aged between 16 and 27 years of age, of African or Asian descent and involved in grassroots political work of any nature were nominated for the awards by their friends, colleagues or mentors.  Of the nominees chosen to receive an award ROC will be honouring the work of:

Brenda May Goodchild—an artist creating powerful art for the current campaigns against the criminalisation of squatting in England and Wales;

Ria Hylton—involved in the Movement for Justice campaign against the deportation of Edson Comas;

Mirella—working with So We Stand, a UK-wide popular education collective focusing on struggles for environmental and social justice;

Nim Ralph—a founding member of So We Stand, working with communities across the UK to highlight the social and racial injustice of environmental issues. Also works with MOSAIC,  an anti-racist group in Brighton;

Rukayah Sarumi—has organised lectures on black feminism and the history of the women’s movement in Britain and is now active in Streatham Labour Party; and

Iman Hussein—for her work in the Guides Movement challenging its lack of diversity and with Roots a self-education Black History collective of 6th form college pupils.

Event details:

The awards event will take place at 7 – 9.30 on Friday 2 December 2011 at The Karibu Education Centre, 7 Gresham Road, London, SW9 7PH
Tickets £3 Inclusive of food
There will be a live DJ set by Carlos Martinez (Agent of Change)
Spaces are limited so booking is essential


Award Press Release.doc


Olive Morris in the Black Achievers Wall at the International Slavery Museum, Liverpool

To celebrate International Women’s Month 2011, the International Slavery Museum in Liverpool have selected Olive Morris to take pride of place this year in their Black Achievers Wall, along side Liverpool activist Ebony Gray.

The Black Achievers Wall in the Legacy gallery at the International Slavery Museum is a celebration of Black Achievers past and present. These people represent a real mix of backgrounds, eras and disciplines, from civil rights campaigners and politicians to rock stars and poets. Some are household names like Bob Marley. Others, like rebel slave leader Gaspar Yanga, are virtually unknown to the general public, but all are inspirational.

On March 10 last year, and as part as the Celebrating Women season at the Museum, former ROC member Nadja Middleton made a presentation about Olive Morris and the work of ROC at the unveiling of three new plaques on the Black Achievers Wall. Watch out this space for further news about the dedication of Olive’s image on the Achievers Wall. It is likely there will be a repeat talk by Nadja or some other former member of ROC.


Olive in poster for Goldsmiths’ event

Our good friend Red Chidgey sent us in the post a poster featuring Olive that she found at Goldsmiths, University of London.


absolute Feminismus

ANKELE, Gudrun (Ed) 2010. absolute Feminismus. Freigburg: Orange Press.

The image of Olive Morris is gracing the cover of a new book published in Germany. The book contains texts, manifestos, poems and songs by women activists from all times, including Simon de Beauvoir, Rosi Braidotti, Guerrilla Girls, Sushila Mesquita, Beatriz Preciado, Joan Riviere and Sojourner Truth.

It can be purchased online but be warned, it is written in German!.


Olive Morris in Austria

A friend of ROC has emailed us a picture of a poster for a feminist poster she came across in Austria! Olive is travelling…


Olive featured on the Brixton pound (B£) note


As part of its drive to encourage and sustain local businesses, a group in Brixton have launched the neighbourhood’s own currency. Olive’s image is featured on the £1 and seems to be the note most media outlets highlight as representative of the spirit of the B£ project.

The Brixton pound (B£) can be purchased in £1, £5, £10, and £20 denominations and used at local participating businesses ranging from music shops to dance studios to food shops.

For information about exchanging sterling for B£ or becoming a trader accepting the B£, see the group’s website.

Further coverage of the B£’s launch and a range of perspectives on local currency/consumerism-as-activism, see the following links:


Olive Morris smiles again on 18 Brixton Hill

Olive Morris’ plaque and photograph have finally been reinstated in Olive Morris House, together with a simple window display facing the street. The window display includes a link to a web page where people can read more about Olive Morris’ life and access our blog for further information. In February 2009 ROC (Remembering Olive Collective) and the Morris family had to resort to write directly to Lambeth Executive Director Derrik Anderson, after council officials failed to respond to continued enquiries about the plaque and the photograph. Both plaque and photograph have been removed well over a year ago, during the refurbishment of the building and its re-branding as Brixton Customer Service Centre.

New window display at 18 Brixton Hill
Photo: ROC (Remembering Olive Collective)

Our letters requested that the Council re-installs the plaque and the photograph in a public area of the building, so that users of the Customer Service Centre could learn who Olive Morris was. We had also submitted a detailed proposal to create a window display with pictures, information and testimonies about Olive Morris life, and made enquiries about the removal of the line “Olive Morris House” from the letterhead of correspondence being issued from the building – now reading simply: Customer Service Centre, 18 Brixton Hill.

After our letters reached the Executive Director and some local Councillors followed up on our enquiries, council officials went into a flurry of activity and the plaque and photograph were soon re-instated to the foyer of the staff entrance, and we received a letter informing us that this had happened. A couple of weeks later a window display was also installed.


Memorial visit to Streatham Park Cemetery

To commemorate the anniversary of Olive Morris’ death, the Morris family and friends visited her burial place in Streatham Park Cemetery.

My family and myself would like to thank everyone that took time out of there busy day to attend the Olive Morris rememberance afternooon on Saturday the 12th July. Hope we can all work together to keep her memories alive.
Jennifer Morris Lewis – Olive Morris sister


Special broadcast at SOAS’ Open Air Radio

A special one-hour radio programme presenting the ongoing project Do you remember Olive Morris? was broadcast as part of the STUDENT RISE season at SOAS’s OpenAir Radio, on Friday 30th November 2007, at 2pm. The programme outlined the origins of the Olive Morris oral history project, and introduced the audience to Morris’ story. A selection of music tracks by or about inspiring women who broke through gender and race barriers – accompanied and introduced the range of areas in which Olive Morris was involved as an activist.

To listen to the show visit, and scroll to the bottom of the page where you will find the player.

Soas radio

OpenAir was the official media partner of STUDENT RISE 07, a series of events at universities across London to promote the message of anti-racism and celebrate multiculturalism.