Pardner Hand: A Caribbean answer to British banking exclusion
An exhibition by Museumand, The National Caribbean Heritage Museum
Now open. Free, no need to book ahead. Open until June 2024.
On 22 June 1948, HMT Empire Windrush arrived in the UK from the Caribbean along with many Commonwealth citizens answering Britain’s call for workers after the Second World War. Once in the UK, they worked in skilled jobs such as nursing, transport, and manufacturing.
Despite their contributions to society, many of the Windrush Generation were denied access to basic banking services such as loans and bank accounts because they didn’t have a credit history in the UK. Without access to the banking system, key financial resources such as securing a mortgage became nearly impossible. This led the Caribbean community to join together to support one another through Pardner Hand, an informal, community-based savings scheme. It is a kind of community-based saving method also known as a Rotating Savings and Credit Association (ROSCA) that is used around the world.
This exhibition explores this way of saving which was popularised by the Windrush Generation and highlights Caribbean entrepreneurship in the face of financial discrimination. It celebrates the legacy of the Windrush Generation and their descendants in the UK today, looking at how communities came together to support themselves through saving schemes such as Pardner Hand.