Toxteth says goodbye to community leader Herbie Higgins

herbie higgins for echo

COMMUNITY leader Herbie Higgins who spent more than half a century striving to improve people’s lives in Toxteth will be remembered ar one of Liverpool’s biggest funerals.

Thousands of mourners are expected to pack into Liverpool Cathedral on Saturday to celebrate the life of Herbie Higgins, who died at the age of 89.

The great-grandad came to Britain in 1951, and although he had a trade as a coremaker, which he learnt in Jamaica, many steelworks in the UK would not employ a black man.

But when he got a job at Stone Manganese Marine, Birkenhead, he became a trade union activist who rose to be a shop steward, and embarked on a public service crusade from where he lived in Toxteth.

Some of his successes down the years include opening the first Merseyside Caribbean Centre, which to this day is still thriving on Amberley Street.

He was also instrumental in the set up of the Steve Biko Housing Association, which sought to improve access to housing for ethnic and vulnerable groups.

He also visited prisoners, was on the board of governors at the Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts – where he worked with Sir Paul McCartney to recruit more black students – and sat on employment tribunals where his knowledge and judgement were always valued.


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