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Britain: rainbow nation, racist background

It can't face the future until it takes an unflinching look at its past

By Afua Hirsch  

Wembley, in north London, is one of the capital’s most diverse and congested corners; a cacophony of intersecting shopping malls, ethnic minority grocery stores, tube lines, traffic gridlock and 24-hour commuters. But at the turn of the 20th century, it was just a quiet civil parish on the edge of the countryside. Things changed, irreversibly, here in 1922, when construction begun on a project unlike any other—the 56 nation, 216-acre, £12m British Empire…

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