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Celebrating Black History Month at West Herts College

From humble beginnings in Antigua, Claude Buxton ‘was one the first black men to settle in Watford’.

October is Black History Month and this year we’re celebrating the influence that Black Britons have had on our college community, we’re starting with Claude Buxton who was one the first black men to settle in Watford.

Claude moved to Britain around 1919, after serving as an ambulance driver in World War I. He transferred to the British Ambulance Brigade and relocated to England, where he met his future wife Edith – who was from Bushey.

Today, his granddaughter Lauraine works at West Herts College as a Learning Advisor. She says: "I am certainly proud of my family. Buxton is my maiden name of course.

"My grandfather is widely believed to have been the first black man to settle in Watford around 1919. My dad and his three brothers were all boxers and were very well known in the area during the 50s and 60s."

Claude and Edith settled in Watford where he started his own business as a haulier and they brought up their five children.

Their four sons became famously known as the ‘Buxton Brothers’ owing to their fantastic abilities in sport and boxing.

To find out more about the Buxton family and their heritage in the area please visit the Watford Museum website – click here.