BFUWI was delighted to co-sponsor an event at the Barbados High Commission celebrating the life and work of Sir Frederick Smith, Barbados' first Attorney-General. There was a stimulating discussion about his new biography (co-written by his nephew Alan Smith) between Alan and Professor Richard Drayton of King's College, London on the creation of independent statehood for the island nation of Barbados. Barbados became independent on 30 November 1966.
Sir Hilary Beckles, Professor Harry Goulbourne and Ms. Esther Stanford-Xosie participated in what proved to be a stimulating discussion on the Caribbean's claim to reparations from Britain for slavery. The event was moderated by Mr Hal Austin, senior editor with the Financial Times.
In December 2013, the BFUWI held its second panel debate to discuss the state of the Caribbean economy. The panel included Professor Victor Bulmer-Thomas of UCL, Dr Vindelyn Smith-Hilman and Mr Alan Smith of HSBC and the lively discussion was moderated by BFUWI trustee, Vanessa Rizzoli.
Held on May 22, 2013 at 6 p.m. at the Commonwealth Club, the theme was “New Caribbean Oil Exploration: High Risks, High Rewards?”. From all the reports, attendees were pleased and impressed with the event and the BFUWI Trustees were commended by the speakers, notably David Jessop and Sir Ron Sanders, for hosting a debate on an important topic which is not being widely discussed in the Caribbean, although it ought to be.