Lenny Henry says he has experienced racism his 'whole life', not just this morning on Twitter

The comedian and campaigner spoke out once again about greater ethnic representation on screen

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The Independent Online

Lenny Henry guest presented Radio 4’s Today programme this morning to discuss ethnic diversity in the media.

The comedian interviewed culture minister Sajid Javid about the need for a stronger BAME representation on screen and behind the camera.

Henry also opened up about the racism he has experienced his “whole life”, including at the start of and during his broadcast.

“This has been the case since I was 14, ever since I've been at school I've been dealing with this,” he said. “It's not a new thing. I've had to deal with this my whole life.”

In March, the comedian told a BAFTA audience that the number of BAME people seen on screen was “appalling because the majority of our industry is based around London where the black and Asian population is 40 percent”.

He conceded today that the situation has improved.

“There's been a gradual change. There were racist comments on Twitter this morning,“ he said. “There were racist comments hurled at me the day after the diversity speech earlier this year.

“I'm very aware there's still a way to go. But what's great is there's a tolerance in this country that is extraordinary and to be proud of and I'm proud to be British and my mum was proud to be British too.”