When a baby girl is abandoned at birth, Reverend Arlington and his wife Ginny are only too happy to adopt her. The media cover this moving story, and a Nigerian woman living in England takes more than a passing interest in the Arlingtons. She decides that they world provide the right Christian home for her own baby, Chester. Shortly afterwards, Chester is delivered to social services with a letter explaining that the Arlingtons should be his new parents. So young Chester enters the vicarage of the sleepy seaside village of St Simon. He is the only black child for miles around. The New Tribe tells the story of Chester's long search for his true identity, and the challenges he faces as a black child in a white family.