The role of the youth of today in challenging an "airbrushed" history that excludes racism was stressed at the recent Anti Racist Cumbria Conference.

Close to 400 participants gathered at the picturesque venue in the Lake District for the third annual event.

While the day consisted of a mix of wellbeing exercises, music, and art, the topic of racism was the focal point.

Talks, panel discussions, and informal chats were staged in a bid to dissect this complex issue which continues to permeate modern society.

The summit included a keynote speech from BAFTA-winning broadcaster and writer David Olusoga.

He suggested that the education system's portrayal of history has been "airbrushed", omitting the acknowledgment of racism.

News and Star: Close to 400 participants gathered at the Lake District for the third annual event

Mr Olusoga, known for his books such as Black and British: A Forgotten History, spoke to the audience as he touched on areas of history he says has been left out of the school syllabus.

The BAFTA-winning historian said: “We are still teaching children the story of the Industrial Revolution without its connection to the two million African Americans who lived and died and suffered to produce the raw cotton that arrived in Liverpool in its billions of bales.

“This was at the heart of the Industrial Revolution. We would not think for a second about
teaching the history of the Industrial Revolution without talking about another raw material;

“We would not think it was a comprehensive and honest telling of the Industrial Revolution if
we did not talk about the miners of the North East, of Nottinghamshire, of South Wales.

"About the culture, and the lives, and the suffering and the accidents in those mining

“That would be seen as an inexcusable omission and yet those two million people suffering,
working, trying to build a culture while commoditised as human property in the Mississippi
Valley; that is deemed to be an understandable legitimate omission.

“It is a broken history, a half-truth, a failed lie that we keep teaching generation after

"This ability to airbrush aspects of our history, to create a history that is full of
half-truths is a deeply ingrained habit."

The CEO and co-founder of Anti Racist Cumbria, Janett Walker, expressed her thoughts on the goals of the conference.

Walker said: "With the support of our Event Partner, Cumberland Council, we set out to create an inspiring space for connections, and moving the conversation and anti-racism forward.

"We are all on a journey of learning."

A series of workshops were delivered by established organisations including The Runnymede Trust, brap, and activist Danny F***ing Price.

Attendees also had the opportunity for mindful boat rides on Derwentwater, and savoured the culinary delights of Walaa's Syrian Kitchen offered at the Lakeside Café.

Ms Walker also noted: "Understanding that history and its legacy is the key to creating change, the challenge is people being open to hearing it and sitting with their discomfort within it.

"We hope the Summit encouraged and enabled people to begin to see the part they can play in building a more equitable society for all".