Hundreds of people have signed a petition against the possibility that a Brent park honouring former Prime Minister William Gladstone could be renamed because of his links with the slave trade.

The campaign, run by ‘Save Our Statues’ and launched on, criticised a Brent Council report which noted the names of Gladstone Park, Gladstone Park Gardens, and Gladstone Park Primary School would be reviewed.

It comes as bodies across the country assess the suitability of several places named after those associated with slavery.

However, the petitioners suggested it is “as wrong to only consider history through one specific lens as it is to judge historical people by today’s standards”.

They added that, in Gladstone’s case, he should be celebrated as a four-time Prime Minister and “the greatest Liberal politician of his age”.

The controversy surrounding celebrating Gladstone stems from the fact he called for compensation for slave owners, such as his father, after slavery was outlawed.

However, the petition describes this as a “footnote in his history” which should not “overshadow the subsequent achievements of his long and glorious career”.

It also suggested slave owners were “always going to be compensated upon abolition” and that Gladstone’s views were “unexceptional”.

Any proposed name change of Brent’s Gladstone Park could have an impact on the attached gardens, and the council report noted this would need to be addressed through a public consultation.

The report also pointed out that any changes would be subject to conversations with the Friends of Gladstone Park group.

In terms of Gladstone Park Primary School, a name change would be a matter for its governing body since it is an academy and therefore not under the council’s control.