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Rise: London United

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Title: Rise: London United  
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Subject: Finsbury Park, Shahin Badar, Rise
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Rise: London United


Rise was a free anti-racism music festival held in London, England from 1996 to 2008. Originally organised as an anti-racism festival by the Trades Union Congress (TUC), it was revived as such by the former Mayor of London, Ken Livingstone. In June 2008, the Greater London Authority, under newly elected Mayor Boris Johnson, removed the anti-racist message of the festival.[1] Subsequently the trade unions UNISON and Unite the Union withdrew their festival funding,[2][3] and Johnson cancelled the festival in April 2009, blaming lack of sponsorship.[4]

When, in 1996, the festival was set up, it was originally called "Respect". While primarily a music festival, it also worked to encourage trade unions, voluntary groups, charities and community organisations to highlight their work and ideas concerning equality and the promotion of anti-racism.

The original event took part in Finsbury Park and featured artists Chumbawumba, Fun-Da-Mental, Asian Dub Foundation and Incognito. In 1997, the featured musicians were Luciano, Audioweb, the Fun Lovin' Criminals and Dreadzone and the event took place in Victoria Park, Hackney.

There was no event between 1998 and 2000, but in May 2000 Ken Livingstone was elected Mayor with a manifesto pledge to organise that the anti-racist festival become a yearly event.

The first festival, dubbed "Respect", under Livingstone's tenure, took place in 2001 and attracted around 60,000 people. Since then attendances have been reached around 100,000. After the launch of the political party also called Respect, the festival changed its name to Rise for 2005. After the 7 July 2005 London bombings it was renamed London United, but changed back to just Rise in 2008.

The 2008 festival saw headliner [1]

In 2010, Rise was given new life as a people's festival named [2] Once again supported by the unions such as SERTUC, UNISON, NUT and Unite the Union among others, the clear message against racism is reinstated by the UpRise team.

The UpRise Festival is now held directly in the street as opposed to the traditional park setting of its predecessor as part of the campaign to be fully inclusive and directly active within the community in the movement against racism and all forms of discrimination.

List of festivals

External links

  • Official web site
  • Rise: London United Mayoral Official Website.
  • Rise Festival 2006 View London preview of 2006 festival.
  • UpRise Official web site


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