Edward Colston: Church windows honouring slave trader removed

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Workers covering up the Colston nameImage source, Bristol Cathedral
Image caption,
The VIctorian stained glass window at Bristol Cathedral reads 'to the glory of God and in memory of Edward Colston'

Windows celebrating slave trader Edward Colston are being removed from two Bristol churches.

Panes at St Mary Redcliffe church have already been taken out while those at Bristol Cathedral have been covered up until they can be safely removed.

The Diocese of Bristol said the recent fall of the Colston statue was a "signal" for it to take action.

Canon Michael Johnson, Acting Dean of Bristol Cathedral, said it was "the right response".

"We haven't responded to the issue of racism well over the years," he said.

The cathedral will also be removing other dedications to the 17th Century slave trader as part of "action we have been considering for some time".

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It comes after Black Lives Matter protesters toppled Colston's statue in the city centre and threw it in the harbour on June 7.

Mayor Marvin Rees said he felt "no sense of loss" at the statue's removal, and later confirmed it would go in a museum, after it was pulled from the water.

Canon Johnson said: "We need to see what is realistic for us to acknowledge the evils of slavery but which treads the line between removing those and doesn't rewrite history.

"It's easy for us to look back and say 'if only we'd have known'. Clearly it's not the end of the road."

The previous cathedral dean, Rev David Hoyle had said removing the whole window would cost "many many thousands of pounds".

Several buildings named after Colston have re-evaluated their ties recently, including the Colston Hall and Colston Tower.

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