Timeline 1900 – 2024


The last two decades of the century saw the transformation of mixing and mixedness from a niche position in British society to the mainstream. This was apparent in the country’s ethnic/racial composition, public attitudes to interracial marriage, and the attitudes of officialdom. Between 1981 and 2002/3 the number of interracial relationships increased dramatically, for example, from 21.7% to 35.9% for intermarried Caribbean men and 10.4% to 22.5% for women. There was a commensurate increased in the mixed race population, the 230,000 recorded in the 1985 Labour Force Survey almost trebling in the next fifteen or so years.  The 1990s saw a marked shift in attitudes to intermarriage, social attitude surveys recording a marked drop in the level of opposition especially amongst the younger age cohorts in the population. The interracial partnering of prominent public figures, TV personalities, and a member of the Royal Family no doubt added to this increasing acceptability in British society. By the mid-1990s officialdom had recognised the need to included categorisation for the ‘mixed’ group in the upcoming census. ‘Mixed race’ children had also become the focus of scholarly research on racial/ethnic identity, racial prejudice, and their disproportionate presence in the ‘looked after children’ statistics.  Drama series for TV and films for the cinema increasingly portrayed the lives of young mixed race Britons.