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BAATN was there – at the Ritzy in Brixton on Saturday, 24th June, for the premiere of the documentary film ‘Barrel Children: The Families Windrush Left Behind’ by Nadine White. Barrel children is a term used loosely to refer to the children whose parents migrated to the UK and a reference to the cardboard barrels used to ship goods to family members back on the islands. The film is an inspiration for families of Caribbean heritage. The Barrel children generation were given a platform to talk about their experiences of being left behind by their parents, growing up with aunts and uncles in their home countries, and then being sent to England to reunite with parents they no longer knew and siblings who they had never met. The film also touched on how parents, grandparents and other relatives felt.

This documentary showed the power of telling these stories and sharing them to help heal generational traumas. The film was a roller coaster of emotions, love, laughter, sadness and fear which left me feeling lighter and more connected to myself and our parents, aunts and uncles, grandparents and great-grandparents. It definitely got me to reach out to my family to talk and acknowledge the past.

I was proud to represent BAATN at the premiere. Some of BAATN’s operations team, Afua Pierre and Natasha Sackey, organised BAATN promotional materials to go into filmgoers’ goody bags. I wish to congratulate Nadine White on this endeavour and encourage you all to watch this film. Take your families, the young and the older, to see a rich piece of history when it comes to your local cinema or buy it when it is eventually released.

Certificate: U

82 Mins

Release Date :24 Jun 2023

A stellar debut film from award-winning journalist Nadine White, Barrel Children: The Families Windrush Left Behind peels back the layered tales of Caribbean youngsters who grew up away from their parents before migrating to join them in Britain.

The story of Windrush has come into painfully sharp focus in recent years but what is less well-known is the story of the children of these pioneers whose parents left to rebuild Britain and they only knew of through the ‘barrel’ care packages sent back.

These are the children’s stories of reconciliation and rediscovery within a new world that made little sense to them.

Director: Nadine White

Starring: Blacker Dread, Evadney Campbell MBE, Neil Kenlock MBE, Burchell Davidson, Merlyn Rhone, Jennifer Pringle, Dr Elaine Arnold, Samuel Nelson

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