A NURSE who suffered coronavirus after serving on the frontline treating patients. A former boxer whose gym has helped keep the town in shape and a musician who has entertained thousands through her music.

These are just three inspirational Basingstoke residents you should know about this month as the nation celebrates Black History Month.

Toju Ogbe, spokesman for Black History Month Basingstoke, has set about celebrating the achievements of Black residents and has compiled a list of the inspiring people you should know about.

Vinnie Enyiagu-Okoye, a nurse who tested positive to Covid 19 while working in the frontline was among those honoured by Black History Month Basingstoke.

“It took me a while to recover, but as soon as I felt better, I was keen to get back to work to support my colleagues and help my patients,” said Vinnie after a difficult recovery.

Trevor Francis, a former boxer, owns a boxing gym on Essex Road that's helped nurture generations of sporting talent.

Millicent Hilton has worked as a nurse for 30 years.

While Natasha Watts, a multi award-winning singer and songwriter, has put the town on the map through her vocal talent.

Community champion Grace Powell has spent decades bringing the town together through her work as chair of Basingstoke Caribbean Society and Friends.

And Brighton Hill School student Aicha Balde is showing signs of a bright future already, after publishing two books while still at school.

Nsima Udo, a community leader, has spent years fundraising for charity and organising local sports events.

Claris Angafor has been a committed advocate for autism advocate and is the founder of CAN Abilities.

While shopkeepers Kemi and David Adegboyega run a popular African grocery store.

And Annette Logan – a former nurse at the Basingstoke District Hospital and a receiver of British Empire Medal for her services.

Toju said more community achivers will be announced throughout this month.

Black History Month in Basingstoke is being organised as a collaborative commemoration by five community groups including Basingstoke Unites Against Racism (BUAR), Basingstoke Caribbean Society and Friends (BCS&F), Basingstoke African Caribbean Catholic Association (BACCA), Basingstoke Hindu Society (BHS) and Black Success Initiative (BSI). The consortium is supported by Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council.

He said: “Black History Month allows us to celebrate our common heritage as well as applaud the contributions of Black people in diaspora. I am pleased to see that different groups in Basingstoke have aligned for a collaborative commemoration this year - with the aim to engage, educate and empower our communities. This concerted approach attests to the strength of solidarity in the town.”

An exhibition celebrating black inventors is taking place at Basingstoke Discovery Centre from October 19 until October 31.