Lambeth Libraries celebrate Black History Month

Black History Month

Footballer Troy Deeney joins Lambeth's Black History Month 2022 programme

Lambeth Libraries celebrate Black History Month

Welcome to the Black History Month 2022. We have another bumper programme of events and activities in October. Please join us as we celebrate African and Caribbean history and heritage – including 60 years of Jamaican independence - and the wide variety of vital contributions to Lambeth’s culture.

Library Updates

green libraries

Lambeth Libraries have begun a green savings initiative to help residents save money while also helping the environment. We are having a launch event on Saturday 1 October 2pm at West Norwood Library where we will be joined by some of the local environmental groups in Lambeth. Do come and visit us to hear what is happening in the borough and get involved. Future events being run during October will be a repair café, a bike puncture repair workshop, an arts and craft event with recycled materials and more of our popular clothes swap events – but we would like to hear from you what ideas you have for future events. Visit our website for further details on Lambeth Libraries and Environmental savings.

Lambeth Black History Month October 2022

BHM adult Authors

Welcome to the 2022 Lambeth Black History Month which is taking place throughout the month of October. This year we again bring you a varied line up of over 40 events in our libraries: Talks, poetry, music, film and stories that take you from the history of Africa and the Caribbean through to Windrush and today. There are events for all ages and interests. Do check our the full programme.

A month of writers...

Non-Fiction books

Throughout October we have some great writers visiting Lambeth Libraries, here's a taste:

For those interested in true life and information then we have that covered: Melissa Thompson discusses her Jamaican Cookbook (5 October) – food, history and their connections, Simeon B Kpoturu looks at the Ogoni struggle for justice (10 October) in Nigeria and the fight against the Oil companies devastating their land. Historian Robin Walker examines the latest research on African History (11 October) and African Architecture (18 October), and Kathy MacLean finds, in her grandfather’s biography, a pan-Africanist fighter in Dominica in Black Man Listen (12 October).

Some real highlights in the second half of the month as well, with writer and academic Winston James visiting from the US to discuss his latest book on Claude McKay (13 October), footballer Troy Deeney (23 October - note: date change) talks about his biography Redemption and his campaign to broaden the curriculum for kids today. Podcasters Astrid Madimba and Chinny Ukata take us on a whistlestop tour of Africa in It's A Continent: Unravelling Africa's History One Country At A Time (19 October), journalist and food critic Jimi Famurewa (20 October) launches his latest book Settlers: Journeys Through the Food, Faith and Culture of Black African London. The book talks come to an end with a celebration of New Daughters of Africa: An International Anthology of Writing by Women of African Descent (25 October) hosted by Kadija George MBE.

fiction writers

For Fiction lovers you are in for a treat with Marie-Claire Amuah and Onyi Nwabineli (11 October) discussing two of the must-read books of the year - One for Sorrow, Two for Joy and Someday, Maybe, Celestine Obiora Agbo (17 October) takes us to the Biafran war in his fictionalised memoir Dragonflies and Matchsticks and the LGBTQ+ Reading group discuss Mr Loverman (28 October) by Bernardine Evaristo

There’s just so much happening in Libraries this month: poetry with My Place: spoken word night (6 October) and an open mic afternoon (22 October); Theatre from the Windrush Playback performers (18 October); Music from Indigenous Australian musician Jessie Lloyd (19 October) and Pegasus Opera (29 October) and Film from Oxygen Arts in a showing of Two and a Half Questions (28 October) and the Classic Film Club celebrates a Black classic (1 November).

Not to be missed are the celebrations and we are hosting two great nights – The Brixton Immortals Domino Club invite you to a night of joyous merrymaking (22 October) and we’re celebrating the anniversary of Jamaican Independence (24 October) with a fantastic line up of performers.

Jamaica 60 Celebration

Jamaica 60 Celebration

Monday 24 October, 7pm
Brixton Library. SW2 1JQ
Booking via Eventbrite

Join us at Brixton library for a very special celebration evening for Jamaica 60! Through literature, comedy, poetry and song we will host an evening to tell the story of Jamaica, and in particular of those that came to Britain.

Event kindly sponsored by JN Bank UK and The Voice Newspaper.

Jamaica 60 sponsors

Children's Programme

Children's festival

Of course Black History Month is for everyone and all ages, this year we have a packed programme for children.

Black books for Kids

Black Books for Kids

Saturday 8 October 11am. Streamed online Facebook @BHMLambeth

Librarians Zoey Dixon and Liz Chapman talk about the books they have been reading and have loved by Black writers and illustrators for kids and teens.

Children's books

Author and historian Stephen Bourne launches his new book for young people, Black Poppies (15 October), Ken Wilson-Max (25 October) gives a very special reading of his new title Eco Girl! and new writer Janelle McCurdy discusses her middle-grade fantasy series Mia and the Lightcasters (26 October). 

... and there are Drumming workshops, radical badge making sessions, Creative writing, Chatterbooks and Carnival Headdress making... just loads to do. For full Lambeth Black History Month details and all events download the Progamme 

Programme for Schools

Programme for schools

Calling teachers... throughout October we have a great programme for schools including authors Janelle McCurdy, Dapo Adeola, Ken Wilson-Max and Kwame Alexander along with creative writing, Onisere and the Ballet Queen and Archives discussions on street names, statues and memorials in Lambeth after Black Lives Matter! Check out the programme for details.

Black Sexual Health Day

Black Sexual Health

Wednesday 26 October, 1pm to 5pm
Clapham Library. SW4 7DB

There is no need for an appointment, just drop in to speak to staff from Brook about The Come Correct (or CCard) scheme, which provides access to free condoms  across London. Once registered you can collect condoms or get advice from any Outlet displaying the Come Correct logo. On the day we will be offering young people aged 13 to 24 the opportunity to access the scheme, including the opportunity to take condoms, as well as a chance to discuss any sexual health related questions.


Olayanju Dada: 'Omi Dúdú - Black Water'

Olayanju Dada: 'Omi Dúdú - Black Water'

Tuesday 4 October to 31 October
Brixton Library. SW2 1JQ

An Art exhibition to stimulate the eyes through the mind. History is Omi Dúdú (or Black Water) and daunting to navigate. We need storytellers and to a greater extent, poets who can visualise for, and show us, what lies beneath its still and dark surface. We also need mystics and sages who can conjure up paths that lead us deep down, into our unlived futures. We need new iridescent masquerades who can show and teach us the sacred, fiery footwork, movement and language necessary to navigate this virgin mindscape. Black history is magical waters.

spaces of (dis)connection: migrant essential workers

Photograph: Paulina Korobkiewicz

Photograph: Paulina Korobkiewicz

Friday 29 September to 14 October
Clapham Library. SW4 7DB
Entry is free and open during Library hours

spaces of (dis)connection: migrant essential workers follows a pioneering project conducted by researchers across the UK to investigate how the pandemic has affected the everyday lives and settlement plans of Polish workers in the UK. This exhibition combines newly commissioned photographic work by Małgorzata Dawidek, Paulina Korobkiewicz, and Sylwia Kowalczyk alongside anonymous testimonies given by Polish essential workers across the UK. 

Other Library Events

Craft Wednesdays at Brixton Library

Craft Wednesday

Starts on Wednesday 5 October, 2.30pm and runs through to the end of the year
Brixton Library.
 SW2 1JQ

Great opportunity for you to learn new skills, support your health & wellbeing,
partake in creative activities, meet new people and enjoy a good time. The craft group is free to attend and open to all.
For further info, contact: Friends of Brixton Library

Health logos

Poetry Night: My Place: Home in a Changing World

Poetry Night: My Place: Home in a Changing World

Thursday 6 October, 7pm
Minet Library. SE5 9QY

Join us on National Poetry Day for an evening of spoken word and poetry. For Black History Month we invite black poets in a celebration of their work around themes of the environment, home and public space.

This event is organised in conjunction with NOIRES, the current exhibition by Roxane Mbanga at San Mei Gallery. This event is supported by the National Lottery through Arts Council England and Fluxus Arts Projects.

To express interest in performing, please contact Zoey Dixon at

Expansion Rebellion: fighting a runway and saving the planet

Expansion rebellion

Tuesday 11 October, 7pm
Carnegie Library. SE24 0AG
Booking via Eventbrite

Join independent journalist and author Celeste Hicks to discuss her latest book Expansion Rebellion. Celeste traces the dramatic story of how the case against Heathrow's third runway was prepared - and why international aviation has for so long avoided meaningful limits on its expansion.Event organised by the Friends of Carnegie Library.

What If Lambeth?

What If Lambeth

Thursday 13 October, 6pm to 8pm
Clapham Library. SW4 7DB

Thursday 20 October, 6pm to 8pm
Streatham Library
SW16 1PN

Workshops for 16 to 25 year olds.

What If Lambeth? is a community project collecting young people's ideas of what a better future for our borough might look like. If you can visualise the future you want, you can make it happen. Join What If Lambeth? to imagine a greener and fairer future.

Older People's Group

Older People's groupolder people

Friday 28 October, 10.30am to 12pm
Streatham Library. SW16 1PN

Everyone over 50 years of age is welcome to join this friendly Group for board games, crafts, puzzles and much more. Tea, coffee and biscuits are available at a small cost. An ideal way for older people to get together for activities, a chat and refreshments. We look forward to seeing you soon. 

If you would like further information, please contact Monica on
020 7926 6768.

StoryTrails in Lambeth

Winifred Atwell

Throughout October
Brixton Library. SW2 1JQ

Be joined by the late concert pianist Winifred Atwell in a fantastic augmented reality (AR) trip through her life in Brixton. Pick up an AR device at Brixton Library or download the StoryTrails App on your phone and trace her life in Brixton from long gone concert halls to her famous beauty salon on Railton Road – all accompanied by BBC and BFI archive footage and previously unseen archive.

National Hygiene Week

National Hygiene Week

National Hygiene Week
Monday 3 to 9 October 

To help raise awareness about hygiene poverty, and its impact on communities across the UK, Brixton, Streatham, Clapham, West Norwood, South Lambeth and Durning libraries will be taking donated new and unopened hygiene products.

Please help by donating 

Borrow an iPad from the library

Borrow an iPad

For those that need help with a device or data to help them with job searching, we are now running an iPad loan project aimed at people who do not currently have a device for job searching. If you would like to borrow an iPad, please contact Brixton, Streatham, Clapham, Durning, South Lambeth, West Norwood and Minet libraries to register your interest.

English classes for Speakers of Other Languages at the Library


The library service will be running ESOL classes at the following Libraries this term:

Brixton Library - Mondays 2pm to 4.30pm
Clapham Library- Tuesday 2pm to 4pm
Durning Library - Mondays 10am to 1pm 
Tate South Lambeth Library - Tuesdays 10am to 12pm
Streatham Library - Mondays 9.30am to 1pm, and 2pm to 6pm
West Norwood Library - Mondays 6pm to 8pm

Please contact the Libraries directly to reserve a place.

From Our Friends

Brixton BookJam

Brixton BookJam

Monday 3 October, 8pm
Hootananny, 95 Effra Road, SW2 1DF

Live and Free - Brixton Bookjam is back at their regular venue, the Hootananny in Brixton. Attendees will be hearing from writers: Mik Artistik, Deserter, Roșie Wilby, Ivy Ngeow, CJ Schuler, Ned Beauman, Kwaku Osei-Afrifa, Graham Buchan, Zelda Rhiando, and Celine Hispiche. Join us for October's

Clapham Book Festival

Clapham book festival

Saturday 15 October, 3pm to 8pm  
Omnibus Theatre. 1 Clapham Common North Side. SW4 0QW
Tickets, various from £12 to £20.
Book here

Clapham’s distinctive and quirky book festival holds its Showcase day which includes absolutely top-notch historians, broadcasting big names, bestselling fiction writers and a compelling crime panel - Confirmed authors include Sir Antony Beevor and Dame Jenni Murray - there is something for everyone.

Black Writers Challenge

Black Writers Challenge

How many books by Black writers or illustrators have you read this year? For some book inspiration visit We’d love to know what you’re reading #BlackWritersChallenge @BHMLambeth on Twitter, Facebook or @Lambeth_Libraries on Instagram

new mags Libby

Free e-book and e-audiobook, magazine and comic downloads

With your library card you can use our e-library for free, just go to When logging in use all letters in your library card number 'LMP'.

We've got thousands of e-books, audiobooks, magazines and comics to download and they're all free. Get the Libby app on your phone, iPad or tablet, or access the website on a PC or laptop and start listening or reading straight away! 


We now subscribe to BorrowBox and Libby App so you have more eBook and eAudiobook choices - all delivered directly to your device. Download the apps from your app store now and enjoy a feast of free listening!


Fantastic free online resources and free film streaming

There are also other online resources available to you, including Times Digital Archive and PressReader app (Over 7,000 newspapers and magazines from more than 120 countries. Great for catching up on the daily papers from around the world or brushing up on your languages if you are a student. Get free access to thousands of movies with your library card. Simply register at Lambeth KanopyTake a look at what's available.

Lambeth Soldier

Lambeth Archives

You can visit Lambeth Archives five days a week, including evenings and weekends, to discover more about Lambeth's rich and diverse histories. See Planning your visit | Lambeth Council for our opening hours; email to book an appointment. Alternatively, you can search and browse over 15,000 images and documents from our collections online at Lambeth Landmark.

Join the Library online

If you do not have a library membership, just join online at and contact the library you wish to collect your library card from. Alternatively, call 020 7926 0750 or email as above and we will enrol you.  

Lambeth Libraries