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I Am Norwell Roberts

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To appreciate the present and how far we have come we sometimes need to revisit the uncomfortable past, no matter how painful.

Norwell Roberts, who became the Met’s first Black police officer in 1967, found out he had a new job the same way the readers of the Daily Telegraph did. The headline read ‘MET TO HAVE FIRST COLOURED POLICEMAN’.

From that day forward his face became a symbol – of acceptance, of a diverse police force, of a changing Britain. He was turned into the poster boy for progressive policing – but his day-to-day reality was anything but. Greeted with prejudice, ridicule, and rejection, he refused to quit.

And thus began an extraordinary career that placed him on the frontlines of a tumultuous period in Britain’s history. Stationed at embassies, anti-war protests and riots, his race singled him out and landed him on front pages around the world.

I am Norwell Roberts is the incredible true story of the man behind the headlines, in his own words. Honest, moving, and impossible to forget, it is a story of resilience against the odds, and of one man’s ability to make a difference.