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Leverhulme Early Career Fellowship:
The source of the stream: centring the enslaved Africans who built Penrhyn Castle

Extending connections across the Atlantic, from Wales to Jamaica and back to West Africa, April-Louise Pennant decolonises the public memory of slavery, uncovering the hidden histories of the exploitation that built Penrhyn Castle. Find out more here.

April-Louise is a guest editor on a special issue of Frontiers in Sociology. Find out more here.

Making Labour Visible - Repositioning Colonial Plantation Paintings in the care of the National Trust


This project is supported by National Trust Research Seed funding and is the first piece of research into the plantation paintings at Penrhyn castle. It is a continuation of the GW4 & National Trust Colonial Connections Community of Practice project. 



Photo Credit: The National Trust 

The aim of the programme is to establish an expert Community of Practice (CoP) across the GW4 universities (Bath, Bristol, Cardiff, Exeter) & the National Trust that will advance future understanding of a collection or property through academic collaboration & shared exploration with National Trust curators & managers on the theme of Colonial Connections. April-Louise is was part of the Penrhyn castle team.

MEAD Conference

April-Louise was one of the co-organisers for the MEAD conference. The theme was Migration, 'Race, Ethnicity and Diversity in Post-Brexit Pandemic Britain'. Our aim was to bring together a diverse range of voices and perspectives to examine the challenges, and opportunities, posed by migration, race, ethnicity and diversity in this new context. Read more about it here.

Additional Learning Needs (ALN) transformation


Based in the School of Social Sciences, Cardiff University, the Fellowship is intended to provide support to those who are within 12 months of completing their PhD, to support them in consolidating their PhD, & preparing them for the next stage of their research careers. April-Louise is wrote the first draft of a book, participated in further research training & co-convened the  Migration, Ethnicity, Race & Diversity Research Group (MEAD) interdisciplinary research forum.

Anti-Racist Wales Action Plan

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Photo Credit: The Welsh Government

As one of her roles at the Welsh Government, April-Louise contributed to the development of their Anti-Racist Wales Action Plan, the first of its kind in Wales. Read more about it here.

Is there a pronounced sense of 'educational urgency' amongst Black British females within higher education in the UK?

Photo Credit: The Welsh Government

As one of her roles at the Welsh Government, April-Louise worked in the ALN team leading on specific areas of work directly & indirectly linked to the new legislative framework of the Additional Learning Needs & Education Tribunal (Wales) Act 2018, & the associated transformation programme.

Running Against the Wind: Report on Black Lives Matter & staff experiences of race, gender & intersectionality in the Welsh Government

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April-Louise completed her undergraduate dissertation at the University of Kent where she explored the educational experiences of thirteen Black British women undergraduates of Jamaican & Nigerian heritage, using focus groups & interviews, to explore their motivations & decision-making.

“Look, I have gone through the education system and I have tried damn hard to get to where I am, so no one is gonna stop me!": the educational journeys and experiences of Black British women graduates

Photo Credit: The Welsh Government

On behalf of the Welsh Government's staff diversity networks' steering groups, & in light of the re-emergence of the Black Lives Matter movement in 2020, April-Louise & her colleague conducted research & co-authored the awarding-winning report. Read the final report on the Publications page here.

The role of Affinity Groups in shaping the experiences of Black female undergraduates at a Russell Group University

April-Louise completed her Masters dissertation at the University of Birmingham where she interviewed seventeen Black women undergraduates to find out about the role of student affinity groups in their experiences at a Russell Group university in England.

The Black International Community (BIC)

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April-Louise was one of three co-founders of the Black International Community (B.I.C) at the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK). It was created for all students interested in learning more about Africa, the Caribbean & its diaspora through a range of​ university-funded, organised events and activities.  You can read more about her year studying abroad in Hong Kong here.

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April-Louise led the planning of a silent protest, 'Kent Can't Breathe', which was a demonstration of solidarity as part of an international show of anger at police brutality against Black people both in the UK & US. The protest, sparked by the death of Eric Garner in the US was attended by over 40 people & was described by local media outlets as "one of the most powerful student protests in the city".

April-Louise completed her PhD research & thesis at the University of Birmingham where she explored the educational experiences and journeys, from primary school until university, of twenty-five Black British women graduates using in-depth, semi-structured interviews.

Read full thesis on the Publications page here.

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April-Louise was a co-founder of the Black Women of Birmingham, a group created to celebrate, educate & empower the amazing Black women of Birmingham city. The group holds events & creates safe spaces for Black women to come together, talk, laugh & to heal.


April-Louise was a member of the Welsh Government's working group, chaired by Professor Charlotte Williams OBE, which reviewed learning resources & professional training in relation to the teaching of Black, Asian & Minority Ethnic history, Welsh history & cynefin in Wales' ambitious new curriculum. The final report recommendations were accepted by the Welsh Government.

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April-Louise spent 2 months working as a camp counsellor at a summer camp in New York state. She supervised the campers, joined in with whatever they were doing & made each day more fun than the one before, whilst ensuring their safety & well-being at all times. 

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During her year abroad in Hong Kong as part of her undergraduate degree, April-Louise volunteered at two schools- one in Mainland China & one in Hong Kong, teaching English to the students. 

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