Trooping the Culture book launch with author Richard Stokes

Monday 24th October

In 1988 Richard Stokes became the first Black Queens Guardsman. Against all odds he joined the elite Brigade of Guards. He was a Grenadier Guard at 16 years old.


Despite this perfect honour, Richard’s life in the army was far from perfect. Fighting conflict was one thing, fighting racism was quite another.

Ironically, Richard was adopted into a white family in 1969 when he was 9 months old. His family showed him love and compassion but that was not enough to protect him from society. Facing name-calling and hatred, he always felt the odd one out. He struggled with identity, was confused about cultural nuances and he yearned for a sense of belonging.

Richard’s remarkable story is recounted in his new book Trooping the Culture. This fascinating book will be launched at this special evening in conversation with award-winning broadcaster Sherrie Eugene-Hart. Richard will reveal his thoughts on intercultural adoption and investigate the psychological legacy it leaves behind. The event will also explore the themes of identity and belonging and expose Richard’s feelings about racism in the army, through his eyes.