Sierra Leoneans in the United Kingdom
|17,048 Sierra Leonean born (2001)
Ancestral Numbers Unknown
|Regions with significant populations|
|London, Sheffield, Liverpool, Cardiff, Birmingham, Manchester, Leicester and Bristol.|
|Krio, English, Mende, Temne, Mandingo|
|Christianity · Sunni Islam · Atheism|
Sierra Leonean migration to the UK has a long history, with traders, chiefs, doctors and lawyers sending their children to be educated in Britain in increasing numbers from the mid-19th century. In the late 18th century, the Province of Freedom was founded by free and freed African Americans, West Indians, and Black Britons from England who were transported to Sierra Leone. The Province of Freedom was founded with the support of the Committee for the Relief of the Black Poor. This colony lasted from 1787 to 1789 when it was destroyed. The city of Freetown was founded as a refuge for freed slaves.
Migration in the 17th century
Many British traders in the Service of the Royal African Company went to Sierra Leone during the 17th and 18th centuries. Many had children with women from the Sherbro tribe and their descendants can be found in Sierra Leone today. Thus a number of Sierra Leoneans (particularly those from the Sherbro and Creole ethnic groups) can trace their ancestry back to British traders, colonial officials, and former slave traders.
Migration in the 20th century
There was a small Sierra Leonean population in the UK in the early part of the 20th century and Sierra Leoneans served in the British armed forces during World War II. More recent migration from Sierra Leone to the UK has included refugees fleeing the Sierra Leone Civil War. One author states that some 17,000 Sierra Leonean refugees arrived in the UK between 1992 and 2003. Prior to the war, starting in the 1960s, smaller numbers of refugees arrived in the UK. The Sierra Leonean migrant population includes numerous ethnic groups, including Sierra Leonean-Lebanese. Most Sierra Leonean refugees in the UK live in London, with smaller numbers found in Manchester and other major cities.
Migration in the 21st century
The UK Office of National Statistics recorded 23,000 Sierra Leoneans living in England Wales in 2011.
Diaspora organisations in the UK
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- Michelle Ackerley – Television presenter
- Alberta – Singer
- Paul Barber – Actor, known for playing Denzil in Only Fools and Horses
- Sylvia Barrie – Contestant on Big Brother 9
- Chris Bart-Williams – Former professional footballer
- Tiana Benjamin — Actor in EastEnders
- Billy Boston – Former Welsh rugby player
- James Cleverly – Politician
- Carlton Cole – Professional footballer
- Samuel Coleridge-Taylor – British composer
- John Conteh – Former British boxer
- Curtis Davies – Professional footballer
- The Dualers – Busking duo
- Idris Elba – Film actor
- Ryan Giggs – Professional footballer, holds most appearances for Manchester United
- Michael Harvey – Musician, former member of So Solid Crew
- Albert Jarrett – Professional footballer
- Steve Kabba – Professional footballer
- Chris Kamara – Former professional footballer, currently a broadcaster
- Malvin Kamara – Professional footballer
- Sheku Kamara – Former professional footballer
- John Keister – Former professional footballer
- Amanda Mealing – Actor
- Nigel Reo-Coker – Professional footballer
- Leroy Rosenior – Former professional footballer
- Liam Rosenior – Professional footballer
- Isha Sesay – News anchor on CNN International
- Kadija Sesay – Literary activist, short story writer and poet
- Danny Wilson – Former Welsh rugby player
- Rochelle Wiseman – Singer, member of The Saturdays
- "Country-of-birth database". Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development. Retrieved 2008-09-21.
- Debrunner, Hans Werner (1979). Presence and Prestige: Africans in Europe. Basel: Basler Afrika Bibliographien. p. 368.
- "The Black Poor". Black Presence: Asian and Black History in Britain. National Archives. Retrieved 2009-07-16.
- Rutter, Jill (2003). Supporting Refugee Children in 21st Century Britain: A Compendium of Essential Information (revised ed.). Stoke on Trent: Trentham Books. pp. 260–263. ISBN 1-85856-292-9.
- "Immigration Patterns of Non-UK Born Populations in England and Wales in 2011". Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 13 February 2016.