Albert Grant


William Robinson Clarke

‘I see life like a conveyor belt … and I hope each of us could find our place to contribute to that perfect product’

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From the age of 21, Barbadian-born Albert Grant had dedicated his life to serving the community. He has continued to do so in Ipswich after settling there in 1955. His commitment has always been about shaping the community and taking opportunities to create the best for everyone. It has led to his early involvement in trade union activities in the engineering industry where he worked.

Albert became a Labour Councillor for the Whitehouse Ward in 1988 and served on the Housing Development and Community Improvements Committees. He worked tirelessly to secure better housing for his constituents in Whitehouse and to ensure the rights of these citizens were upheld at all times.

In 1995, Albert pioneered the involvement of Black, Asian and minority ethnic individuals in local politics. He was Ipswich’s first Black Councillor and Mayor. In addition to his time as Mayor, he served a year as Deputy Mayor, as well as 26 years as a Councillor.

Albert’s passion for equality and justice for all is reflected in other prominent roles he occupied over the years. He is a founding member of the Ipswich Caribbean Association, the Ipswich & Suffolk Council for Racial Equality and an advisor to the Pakistani, Indian and Chinese Associations in Ipswich. These roles enabled Albert to truly indulge his passion for supporting communities to improve their lives and ensure they were treated fairly and had access to justice.

Albert instinctively knew that education was key to building strong, resilient communities. Recognising that racism was often a barrier in the education system, he was instrumental in setting up the Ipswich Caribbean Association Saturday School and later chaired ‘Side by Side’, a charity set up to divert young people from drugs and crime. Albert was also a member of the Ipswich Crime Reduction Panel and chaired the Ipswich Police Forum. Continuing his dedication to better education, Albert became a governor for Westbourne Sports College and Whitehouse Community School.

Albert has always been strong in education, working alongside people who were involved in creating what was a ‘college’ into the now University of Suffolk. Through this work in October 2021, Albert was awarded an Honorary Doctorate Degree.

He has been quoted as saying: “I see life like a conveyor belt, starting with the raw material, represented by the opportunities and challenges life throws at us, the helping hands and minds we bring. It is about finding the right tools, resources, energy and creativity laid out in equal measure to help mould the perfect product. A part of me has always been on that conveyor belt and I hope each of us could find our place to contribute to that perfect product.”

Albert lives with Ena, his life partner, and is blessed with six children, ten grandchildren and five great-grandchildren. He enjoys travelling and reading.

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