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Subject

Asquith Xavier

Person  Male  Born 18/7/1920  Died 18/6/1980

Categories: Race Issues, Transport

Countries: Caribbean Islands

Asquith Camile Xavier was born in the West Indies. One of the Windrush generation who migrated to the UK after WW2. He died Chatham, Kent.

In 1966 Xavier successfully fought to become the first black worker employed as a train guard at London Euston station. Previously there had been a colour bar ensuring that only white staff could hold customer-facing roles.

Our Picture source has a short video about Xavier and the campaign for a plaque at Chatham Station, in his home town. In 2016 BBC Radio 4 produced the documentary: 'Asquith's Fight for Equality' and on 24 September 2020 the campaigned for plaque was unveiled at Chatham Railway Station

From the Black History Month website we confirmed his dates of birth and death and our colleague, Andrew Behan, also found that he arrived in Southampton, Hampshire, aboard the TN. Ascania of the Sandell Brothers Ltd line on 16 April 1958. According to the ship's manifest he was a planter, married, travelling alone, who held a passport issued in Dominica and had departed from Roseau, Dominica, giving 186 Ashmore Road, London, W9 as his intended place of residence in the UK.

Electoral registers in 1962 and 1963 showed him and his wife, Agnes Disney Xavier (1922-2004), listed at 21 Chippenham Road, London, W9, whilst the 1964 registers show them both at 71a Swinbrook Road, London, W10. Telephone directories in 1971 and 1972 show him as the subscriber at 119 Pond House, Pond Place, London, SW3 and from 1973 to 1978 at 31 Grove Place, Chatham, Kent.

Probate records confirm that when he died, aged 59 years, on 18 June 1980 his home address had remained as 31 Grove Road, Chatham, Kent. Probate was granted on 14 July 1980 and his effects totalled £1,400.

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Asquith Xavier

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Asquith Xavier

Unveiled in the the fiftieth anniversary year of his victory.

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