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Welcome to the Lifeline Expedition & March of the Abolitionists Website

The Lifeline Expedition began as a reconciliation journey linking the European and African nations along the Greenwich meridian line (zero longitude.)

The first Lifeline Expedition journey was the Jubilee 2000 Lifeline Walk in England. During the course of that journey, it became evident that the major reconciliation issue between Europe and Africa, was that of the legacy of the Trans-Atlantic slave trade.

In 2002, a team of 20 from the three corners of the former slavetriangle, Europe, West Africa and the Caribean, travelled through France. For the first time the slave coffle was used, with white Europeans and Americans walking in replica yokes and chains as a symbolic sign of apology for the slave trade.  

In 2003, the Lifeline Expedition visited Spain and Portugal and another new feature was added: copies of the apology statement for the slave trade, issued at the last Liverpool City council meeting of 1999, were delivered to city halls. It was requested that councils consider making similar statements for their cities.

The Lifeline Expedition in USA in 2004 received wide coverage in the media, partly because of the opposition of right wing white supremacist groups. Highlights included partnering with the Kunta Kinte-Alex Haley Foundation at a commemorative event in Annapolis, Maryland and partnering with Richmond City Council and other groups in a three day "Program for our Collective Healing."

In 2005, The Lifeline Expedition in the Caribbean region included visits to entry points for the slave trade - Barbados (British), Cartagena Colombia (Spanish), Curacao (Dutch) and Martinique & Guadeloupe (French). Once again there was widespread media coverage. In Curacao, the team were received by the Governor General and the Prime Minister. 

There were two expeditions in West Africa in 2006. In the Gambia, the expedition brought their apology to the opening ceremony of the International Roots Festival and the Vice-President released the whites from the yoke and chains. The participation of Andrew Hawkins, a descendant of England's first slave trader Sir John Hawkins was widely reported in the world's press.

The journey concludes with the March of the Abolitionists for the Bicentenary of the Abolition of the Slave Trade in 2007.

A documentary about the journey called Yokes and Chains was made. More information can be found at www.yokesandchains.com and a trailer can be viewed at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4X35cb4a7gg 

Lifeline Expeditions resumed in 2012 with a journey to Jamaica at the time of their Jubilee commemorating 50 years of independence.

The next Lifeline Expedition to Haiti will take place in November 2013.

 
   

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