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Beverley Knight speaks of experience of racism during childhood

The singer said that classmates at her primary school directed racist chants at her.

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Beverley Knight (Stefan Rousseau/PA)

Beverley Knight (Stefan Rousseau/PA)

Beverley Knight (Stefan Rousseau/PA)

Beverley Knight has opened up about her experiences of racism while growing up in Wolverhampton.

The singer, 47, said during a panel discussion on ITV News that she had been the victim of racist bullying while at school.

“I remember lots of racist chanting in maths classes, as a primary school child in maths,” she said.

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Beverley Knight grew up in Wolverhampton (Ian West/PA)

Beverley Knight grew up in Wolverhampton (Ian West/PA)

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Beverley Knight grew up in Wolverhampton (Ian West/PA)

“I think it’s because the teacher was entirely indifferent to the plight of one black child who was getting this racist abuse in her classroom.

“Even though she could hear it, she’d carry on teaching, like nothing happened.”

Knight added that the teacher told her to “go away” and “ignore” her classmates.

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The 47-year-old was speaking on an ITV News panel discussion (Isabel Infantes/PA)

The 47-year-old was speaking on an ITV News panel discussion (Isabel Infantes/PA)

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The 47-year-old was speaking on an ITV News panel discussion (Isabel Infantes/PA)

“I was removed from that class,” she added.

Knight also said that, before she was born, elderly neighbours to her childhood home called the council because they could not understand how her parents, a young black couple, had “managed to buy a house on this street”.

“They assumed that there must be some kind of nefarious goings on behind it,” she said.

PA