Heroes of Leeds installation to celebrate legacy of Leeds Beckett University alumna Gertrude Paul
Gertrude, who completed her teacher training at the James Graham College of Education (now Carnegie School of Education within Leeds Beckett) in 1962, was also co-founder of the Leeds West Indian Carnival, co-founder and president of the United Caribbean Association in Leeds, and also served on the UK Commission for Racial Equality.
In May 2020, Carnegie School of Education launched the Gertrude Paul Doctoral Scholarship to advance research into improving numeracy and literacy for school children from African and Caribbean backgrounds.
Her daughter, Heather Paul, is a lecturer at Carnegie School of Education and is researching her PhD on the legacy of her mother.
Attending the unveiling of the installation, Heather said: “Today a monument of my mother is being reinstalled on the Canal, and I am super proud and honoured to be the daughter of a mother who was exceptionally talented educational leader, musician, community activist, leading national and local policy for antiracist practice and much more.
“This monument is another reminder of her refusal to give up when faced with obstacles and rejection, her message which I now pass on to all students here is to always remember that you are a valuable human with potential to do your best. Be proud of your individual identity and ensure that the young people you go on to work with in the future and adults know that they are valued too.”
The installation can be found near Crown Point Bridge, and celebrates one of 11 heroes who lived in the Leeds City Region, including fellow Leeds Beckett graduate Yona Knight-Wisdom.