Stop press - read the Race Panel's statement on the outcome of the Edward Colston statue trial

The B&NES Race Panel aims to address systemic inequality, racism and discrimination which disadvantage the people of Bath and North East Somerset because of their culture, ethnicity or race.  The purpose of the panel is to:

  • advise and challenge B&NES public sector bodies on their work to tackle systemic inequality, racism and prevent discrimination
  • increase the visibility of issues relating to race, and to recommend solutions

The panel will be made up of individuals who have volunteered to represent the B&NES communities.  The way that race intersects with other personal characteristics will also be an important part of the panel’s work. After a series of preliminary meetings these Terms of Reference have been agreed:

B&NES Race Panel Terms of Reference


  • Cllr Dine Romero - Chair 
  • Douglas Eason
  • Duncan McGibbon
  • Katie Singh
  • Maria Sidawi
  • Marius Frank
  • Phil De Souza
  • Polly Andrews
  • Cllr Kumar

The purpose and aims of the panel

Bath and North East Somerset (B&NES) Council’s Race Panel is committed to increasing awareness of issues related to race within its sway and through influence in the South West region at large.

We aim to promote, protect and prosper positive professional and social interactions among those living, working and residing in B&NES of diverse racial, ethnic, and national backgrounds with respect, and appreciation of racial, ethnic, and national diversity.

The Race Panel will collaborate with organisations such as local community groups and charities, churches, businesses, schools, museums and universities to achieve its goals of increasing awareness and fostering a diverse environment through events, collaborative projects and other ongoing efforts relating to its heritage as a historic region and city.

Bath’s history as a successful city is closely linked to the financial benefits of slavery, colonialism and empire, which were achieved through the exploitation of other countries and their peoples. The Race Panel will communicate the work which is starting to be done by local heritage organisations towards showing transparency and full and honest history about these links. B&NES residents have the right to feel confident that the true history of Bath is being told; that the contribution of diverse voices is central to that narrative; and that equality and justice in the future can only be achieved when the denial of those rights in the past has been fully acknowledged.

The panel's Mission Statement 

We wish to build a fairer community that champions those who experience marginalisation, inequalities and under-representation due to their ethnic and cultural backgrounds.

The panel will support the Council to:

Illuminate… By hearing the concerns of all local people, the Council will continue to engage on Equality Impacts through Assessment prior to making decisions and as a World Heritage Site of global significance, give voice to the full, fair and transparent story of our cultural evolution, of wealth creation and social history linked to the sugar trade and trans-Atlantic slave trade. Bath’s history as a successful city is closely linked to the financial benefits of slavery colonialism and empire, which were achieved through the exploitation of other countries and their peoples and this needs to be given its proper historic and moral place.

Educate… Ensure that every child in BANES grows up in an environment where diversity is celebrated, marginalisation will never be tolerated, bullying is countered through positive action, with parents and education settings working together to create a culture of fairness and respect for all. Ensure that there is broader education and sharing of knowledge and transparency around how Bath was built on slavery money.

Challenge… B&NES Council will continue to use a recruitment process that gives equal opportunities to all and this will continue to be monitored. This will set a best practice example.  Work towards setting up a self-assessed standard for B&NES Employers to sign up to and increase the representation of minority groups when recruiting teachers and other professionals.

Inspire… Consistent communication that every BANES resident, business and public service, in their own way and through their own actions, to tackle inequality, injustice and discrimination in society, through the advancement of fairness and positive relationships. Establish ways to influence cultures and values, through historical stories and celebrations.

Duration of the panel

A one-year pilot and after one year to be reviewed and consider the next steps. Report to the Council at the end of the year.

Information sharing and communication

Through Webinars and work with partners and stakeholders, the Council’s webpage and communications.

Data sharing

Use of data from Census 2011 and Census 2021 (when available).


Impact of Covid-19 on the panel’s ability to progress throughout the year.

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