Every investor in Britain's slave trade set to be detailed in new 'dictionary' after funding from UK government

Protesters throw a statue of slave-trader Edward Colston into Bristol harbor during a Black Lives Matter protest in June.

London (CNN)The first ever index of investors in Britain's extensive slave trade is being compiled by academics, after the project received £1 million ($1.4 million) in funding from the UK government.

The Dictionary of British Slave Traders will detail the 6,500 members of society who took part in the trade throughout a period stretching more then two centuries.
It comes after a year of debate about Britain's celebration of its colonial past: A number of statues and public memorials to slave owners have been removed or renamed since Black Lives Matter protestors pulled down a sculpture of slaver Edward Colston in the city of Bristol in June.
    William Pettigrew, professor of history at Lancaster University, who is leading the project, told CNN: "We're looking at the entire population of investors in the slave trade -- not just independent investors, but also the corporations that were involved."
      The index will highlight the involvement of some high-profile investors, including the man widely considered Britain's first Prime Minister, Robert Walpole.