Camden News
Publications by New Journal Enterprises
  Home Archive Competition Jobs Tickets Accommodation Dating Contact us
Camden New Journal - OBITUARY
Published: 20 March 2008
Trevor Carter
Trevor, a true fighter for equality

TREVOR Carter, who died at his Archway home a fortnight ago, will be remembered for his “inspirational“ work on education and social equality.
Mr Carter, 77, a lifelong socialist, teacher, and black rights activist came to England from Trinidad in the Windrush era of the early 1950s.
Islington MP Jeremy Corbyn described him as a man who gave “hope and inspiration to many who were suffering appalling racism and discrimination as newly arrived workers from the West Indies.”
“Trevor’s passing is very sad, for the knowledge he retained, and the loss of this man who could be so inspirational to so many young people who were up against the social ills of our age,” he added.
The eldest of 12 children, Trevor left school at 14 to take a job as a mess boy on a merchant ship. His experiences in New Orleans at the height of racial segregation engendered a lifelong battle to improve race relations.
A socialist since school days, Mr Carter’s allegiance to the Young Communist Party led him to Moscow, Cuba (where he met Fidel Castro) and Guyana, where he worked alongside Cheddi Jagan, the controversial chief minister, from 1962-1964.
On his return to Britain, he grounded his ideals in education, teaching at Brook House School for many years and later as head of equal opportunities for the now defunct Inner London Education Authority.
The education authority recommended him for an MBE in light of his research work on the Swann Report (an education reform white paper), but Trevor, a dyed-in-the-wool communist, refused to accept it.
His wife, the actress Corinne Skinner-Carter, said: “If they had offered it to him now he probably would have taken it, but at the time he was very political – he carried a red flag with him at all times.”
In later years his political allegiances mellowed, though he remained a vociferous and respected member of numerous organisations up until his death.
He sat on the board for the Notting Hill Carnival Committee since its inception, and co-founded the Caribbean Teachers Organisation and the Black Theatre Co-operative.
For a time Trevor was chairman of the Hackney Community Relations Enterprise, gave voluntary assistance to War on Want, ran as council candidate for Labour in Islington and wrote a book, Shattering Illusions, about the place of West Indians in British politics.
Mrs Skinner-Carter said: “Any group that was going to be formed – as long as it was socialist-run – he would be involved in it.”
Trevor married Corinne, his childhood sweetheart, soon after they arrived in England, at Christ Church in Hampstead, on New Year’s Eve, 1955.
“I wasn’t brave enough to do the things that he did. Whether I agreed with a thing or not he was going to do it anyway, but I understood him,” she said.
The funeral service was held at St Augustine’s Church, Highgate on Tuesday.


Comment on this article.
(You must supply your full name and email address for your comment to be published)





» Obituaries A-Z


Theatre Music
Arts & Events Attractions