This year, Music Congress (BBM/BMC), the UK convener of the annual International Reggae Day (IRD) global celebration of Jamaican musical culture, is not only organising events across London, but is also liaising with Ghanaian environmental group Eco-Conscious Citizens and reggae star and environmentalist Rocky Dawuni to take up the IRD Plant A Tree Challenge, by planting The Reggae Tree Accra in the Ghanaian capital.

2024 marks the 30th anniversary of IRD, which was begun in Jamaica in 1994 by Andrea M Davis of Jamaica Arts Holdings. This year's theme is “Celebrating 30 Years Of Riddims & Resistance”.

On Saturday June 29, the International Reggae Day London, UK Xtra event takes place at Goldsmiths, University of London in New Cross, south London. Starting at noon with an hour of music set by the Chaaawaaa Radio crew, it ends with an hour Shining Stars Entertainment live showcase from 8.00pm, featuring artists including Chucky Bantan and Audrey Scott.

In between, there will be presentations including Prof. Julian Henriques talking about Goldsmiths' Sound System Outernational; presentations on a reggae album covers exhibition in Harlesden library and The Reggae Tree, which underscore Harlesden, Brent as the capital of reggae in Britain. Veteran DJ and broadcaster will reflect on thirty years of reggae in Britain, whilst Colin Brown introduces the new UK Reggae History Online hub.

Music4Causes Ft. Kimba will offer a short musical interlude singing to love and British reggae history. After the Have Your Say open forum, which starts with the screening of Black Slate mainstay Anthony Brightly's 'The Sticks Man Record' trailer, Davis will be one of the contributors to the Riddims & Resistance To System presentation.

The work of the late producer Sonny Roberts and that of his contemporary counterpart Neil 'Mad Professor' Fraser will be examined. There will also be presentations looking at reggae and racism, Afriphobia, dementia, gospel and women issues.

New Cross based Cummin Up will provide African Caribbean meals for much of the day, with BBM/BMC and Port Royal sponsoring free patties for the early diners. Stalls holders will be providing information or selling an assortment of products, ranging from books, records, health care products, home-made cakes and drinks, to African clothes and artefacts.

The evening will end with the IRDUK Xtra after-party organised at the Goldsmiths' Student Union Bar by the all-female Legs Eleven Sound System. On Monday July 1, which is the actual International Reggae Day, the activities will cut across continents.

Between 11am and 1pm GMT, BBM/BMC, the UK convener of IRD, will in association with Ghanaian environmental group Eco-Conscious Citizens and reggae star and UN Environmental Ambassador Rocky Dawuni, officially plant a tree at the KB Asante Memorial Park in Accra to mark IRD and make a symbolic gesture to IRD's Plant A Tree Challenge. It is expected that there will be representatives at the tree planting event from the South African High Commission and the Jamaican Consulate, on account of this year's theme underscoring the strong links between the two countries.

The inspiration for IRD came to Davis from a speech Winnie Mandela made in Kingston in 1991 to Jamaica women, in which she credited reggae music for uplifting the people of South Africa in their fight to end apartheid and affirmed the unbreakable bond between South Africa and Jamaica, which also celebrates 30 years of post-apartheid democracy in 2024. The VP Records 'Reggae Mandela' compilation album, which is the IRDUK 2024 Recommended Album, will provide much of the soundtrack to the IRD activities in Harlesden, Brent which is dubbed the capital of reggae in Britain.

Between 5-6pm, The Reggae Tree Ambassador, Diane Shrouder-Johnson, will lead a reasoning session on music and environmental matters with local dignitaries and special guests around The Reggae Tree. The party will then move into Harlesden Library for the launch of the three-month Brent Reggae Album Covers Exhibition.

Exhibition curator Kwaku will be joined by special guests, including UK Reggae History Online curator Colin 'CeeBee' Brown, to discuss the featured albums and memories of physical album covers.