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Newspapers of Hansib Publications Ltd

Identifier: HANSIB

Scope and Contents

The collection consists of the following newspapers: the Caribbean Times, African Times and Asian Times.


  • Creation: c1981- 2001

Conditions Governing Use

Hansib Publications Ltd

Biographical / Historical

Hansib Publications was founded in 1970 by Guyana-born Arif Ali, who sold his north London-based West Indian food business to fund the company based on Fonthill Road, Finsbury Park in North London.

In 1971 Hansib launched its first title (the monthly magazine), 'West Indian Digest' before shortly expanding to produce magazines, newspapers and books for Britain’s Caribbean, Asian and African communities. These titles included Caribbean Times, Asian Times, African Times, Asian Digest, Root Magazine and West Indian World. Hansib can be noted for launching the careers of Isabel Appio, BBC producer Abiola Awojobi and former chair of the Labour party black section, Marc Wodsworth.

In 1997, after twenty-four years of publishing newspapers, Hansib Publications sold its three weekly titles and thereby concluded its interest in newspaper publishing. Arif Ali said that he founded Hansib in the 1960s because "mainstream European-led publishing houses rarely published black and minority ethnic (BME) writers' work, if at all. Little positive was written about us, our cultures, our backgrounds and performances. I went into publishing to print stories and feelings that needed telling and would not be produced elsewhere." Through Arif Ali's work with Hansib he was declared by the European Union, the ‘European Year Against Racism’ and Hansib founder, Arif Ali was awarded the ‘European Year Against Racism Champion (Individual) Gold Standard Award’. African Times, Asian Times and Caribbean Times were a central part of this.

In 1997, Arif Ali was also appointed to sit on the Caribbean Advisory Group under the chairship of Baroness Patricia Scotland, set up by the then Prime Minister, Tony Blair to advise the government on matters pertaining to Britain’s Caribbean communities and to address issues relating to Caribbean nation states as a whole.Hansib books are distributed nationally.

Since the early 1980s, Hansib has published more than two hundred books and specialist titles and is widely acknowledged as being a significant brand in black publishing in the United Kingdom.


62 boxes

Language of Materials


Related Materials

Duplicates of Asian Times, African Times and Caribbean Times are held at the London Metropolitan Archives. Hansib Publications books are also held in the BCA library.

Black Cultural Archives: Newspapers of Hansib Publications Ltd
Black Cultural Archives
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script

Repository Details

Part of the Archives Collection Repository

Black Cultural Archives
1 Windrush Square