London Metropolitan University has announced it will rename The Cass School of Art, Architecture and Design to sever its connection to 17th-century slave-trader Sir John Cass.

It made the announcement today, following consultation with the student’s union, the board of governors and staff, as monuments of racist figures are torn-down across the world. These include a prominent statue of slave-trader Edward Colton in Bristol – a man responsible for enslaving over 80,000 people, and killing at least 19,000.

‘We recognise that the use of Sir John Cass’ name contributes to the redemption of a man without acknowledging the enormous pain he caused as a major figure in the early development of the slave trade, and the legacy of this pain,’ said London Metropolitan University’s Vice-Chancellor Lynn Dobbs in a statement.

The University has not yet announced a new name for the school which will be known as The School of Art, Architecture and Design for the interim.

Dobbs added: ‘I apologise that we haven’t taken this step before now. We have a total commitment to oppose racism and should have addressed the name of the school sooner.’

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