Skip to content ↓
Ribston Hall High School

Ribston HallHigh School

To topple or stand? That is the question...

Edward Colston: in some eyes an evil monster and in others a heroic man. In this article I will be reviewing the reasons why this one man’s actions caused the unnecessary deaths of over 20,000 people.

Image result for edward colston bbc​Edward Colston was ironically born on Church Street: Bristol in 1636. I say this because there is nothing saintly about Mr Colston, in fact he is the exact opposite. Mr Colston was one of the leading traders in ivory and slaves during the 1600s (both of which are now illegal). In his barbaric lifetime he transported an estimated 100,000 slaves of African and Asian heritage across the sea in holds so small that even children had to crouch. But his actions didn’t stop there…

 He stole children as young as 6 from their homes and left those incapable of work to die. He branded all of his slaves (men and women alike) on the chest with the company’s initials, RAC. He treated innocent people like animals and stripped them of all humanity, making sure these vulnerable people would never again be free.

Although many argue that he contributed to society, building schools, hospitals and housing for the poor, I believe his statue in Bristol city centre should be permanently removed from the public’s view and destroyed so that the world cannot be influenced by such a barbaric legacy. Look around your homes, your schools, your cities, would you want your friends and family to be condemned to such a horrible fate as that of our predecessors? So what do you say, should the statue be toppled or should Edward Colston stay standing?

By Ilsa, Katie & Lucy P