Competitors for the Carnival Queen title rehearsing at Holborn Hall, Gray’s Inn Road, London. 
The first Caribbean Carnival  (the precursor to Notting Hill Carnival) was held in St Pancras Town Hall in January 1959.


Contenders for the role of Carnival Queen rehearsing for the first Caribbean Carnival, London, January 1959. Photographer Chris Ware.
Faye Sparkes was crowned “Carnival Queen” and won a trip to carnival in Trinidad the following year. 
There were 12 contestants, all from the UK’s West Indian community - 6 Jamaicans, 6 Trinidadians, 1 from British Guiana and 1 Vincentian.  From left to right, Fay Craig, Faye Sparkes, Charmain Ourre, Shirley Robinson, June Allison Bailey, Beryl Cunningham, Ronia Richards, Carlita Callymore, Monica Dwyer and Terez Wiggins.
The beauty contest was championed by Claudia Jones, a leading Black political activist, founder and editor of the West Indian Gazette, and ‘Mother of Notting Hill Carnival’. Claudia Jones was also a supporter of beauty and hairdressing salons run by West Indian women and insisted that the West India Gazette carry beauty tips as way to communicate to a female audience the goals of Black self-realisation and valuing Black women’s beauty.
"this was before the Black Power Days. This was well before we all knew that we were beautiful. We might not have know it, but she knew, and she started this beauty contest." - Corinne Skinner Carter

Competitors for the Carnival Queen title rehearsing at Holborn Hall, Gray’s Inn Road, London.

The first Caribbean Carnival  (the precursor to Notting Hill Carnival) was held in St Pancras Town Hall in January 1959.

Contenders for the role of Carnival Queen rehearsing for the first Caribbean Carnival, London, January 1959. Photographer Chris Ware.

Faye Sparkes was crowned “Carnival Queen” and won a trip to carnival in Trinidad the following year. 

There were 12 contestants, all from the UK’s West Indian community - 6 Jamaicans, 6 Trinidadians, 1 from British Guiana and 1 Vincentian.  From left to right, Fay Craig, Faye Sparkes, Charmain Ourre, Shirley Robinson, June Allison Bailey, Beryl Cunningham, Ronia Richards, Carlita Callymore, Monica Dwyer and Terez Wiggins.

The beauty contest was championed by Claudia Jones, a leading Black political activist, founder and editor of the West Indian Gazette, and ‘Mother of Notting Hill Carnival’. Claudia Jones was also a supporter of beauty and hairdressing salons run by West Indian women and insisted that the West India Gazette carry beauty tips as way to communicate to a female audience the goals of Black self-realisation and valuing Black women’s beauty.

"this was before the Black Power Days. This was well before we all knew that we were beautiful. We might not have know it, but she knew, and she started this beauty contest." - Corinne Skinner Carter

(Source: spiritsdancinginthenight)

  1. somewhereiveneverknown reblogged this from drmartensofficial
  2. youre-not-vincent-price reblogged this from drmartensofficial
  3. livelikebenedict reblogged this from drmartensofficial
  4. the-awesome-mexican reblogged this from drmartensofficial
  5. poetadelanoche reblogged this from drmartensofficial
  6. bl00dbxnk reblogged this from drmartensofficial
  7. ellow33 reblogged this from drmartensofficial
  8. drmartensofficial reblogged this from spiritsdancinginthenight
  9. oldmold reblogged this from africaninsights
  10. africaninsights reblogged this from spiritsdancinginthenight
  11. ahappyplus reblogged this from presleypilgrim
  12. presleypilgrim reblogged this from spiritsdancinginthenight
  13. sheluvlike reblogged this from knowledgeequalsblackpower
  14. loveandlaughter4ever reblogged this from nakedtruthaboutme
  15. the-intricate-fibers-of-ju reblogged this from nakedtruthaboutme
  16. nakedtruthaboutme reblogged this from richgirllifestyle
  17. email-1 reblogged this from spiritsdancinginthenight
  18. whatyouarecapableof reblogged this from spiritsdancinginthenight
  19. kalifourniaklassic reblogged this from spiritsdancinginthenight
  20. oooohbby reblogged this from spiritsdancinginthenight
  21. mrgaygatsby reblogged this from tevinshus
  22. tevinshus reblogged this from spiritsdancinginthenight
  23. porcelain-rain reblogged this from spiritsdancinginthenight
  24. stealy0bitch reblogged this from yungdadd
  25. yungdadd reblogged this from captivatingmystery
  26. kingof20s reblogged this from spiritsdancinginthenight
  27. itsthecrescendo reblogged this from spiritsdancinginthenight and added:
    pretty hurts