The family of Oscar-nominated actor Benedict Cumberbatch is reportedly facing legal action over his historic links to the slave trade in Barbados.

A senior official from the Caribbean island, whose national commission for reparations has a leading role in the commission, has told The Daily Telegraph that it is in the “early stages” of efforts to seek reparations from the Cumberbatch estate’s ancestors.

This paper describes how Joshua Cumberbatch, the seventh great-grandfather of Benedict Cumberbatch, bought Cleland’s plantation in the north of the island in 1728.

It was home to 250 slaves until the abolition of slavery 100 years later.

As a result of this decision, the family, and other slave-owning acts in the British Empire, were compensated by the British government.

Slavery has been at the forefront. Discussions in several Caribbean communities In recent years, the build-up has been largely fueled by Barbados’ decision to become a republic in 2021.

Barbados is part of the Commonwealth of Independent States, which has become a republic due to the weakening of ties with the Crown
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Barbados became a republic in November 2021.

Campaigners in Barbados are urging Tory MP Richard Drakes, who inherited a sugar plantation on the island established with slave labor in the 1620s, to return it.

If he refuses, he may face a demand for compensation.

Even the royal family faces the prospect of a claim, according to officials, although they stress that there is no sense of attachment to living relatives for the deeds of their ancestors.

David Cummings, deputy chairman of the National Commission for Reparations, told The Daily Telegraph that he would like to see ancestors of slave-owning families paid reparations.

When asked directly if it would involve the Cumberbatch clan, he replied: “It’s in the early stages. We’re just getting started. A lot of that history is really coming out now. Is.”

Benedict Cumberbatch himself has expressed his displeasure at his family’s association with slavery, stating that it was the reason he played William Pitt the Younger in the film Amazing Grace, which focused on the abolition of the trade. was

He also received critical acclaim for his leading role as plantation owner William Ford in 12 Years a Slave more than a decade ago.



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