BRADFORD Cathedral has launched new exhibitions featuring stories of Ugandan Asian and Windrush migrations to Bradford.

The two exhibitions – sponsored by the University of Bradford - open dialogue between different journeys of hope from two communities who tell stories of Bradford’s black history, as well as stories of migration to Bradford as a city of sanctuary.

The launch event – held at the Cathedral and taking place at the start of Black History Month – began with an introduction by the Reverend Ned Lunn, the Cathedral’s Canon for Intercultural Mission and the Arts.

He said: “This site has always been a destination. It’s a place that has brought people to it.

"But we don’t just think of the cathedral as a destination, but as a home, and these two exhibitions talk about journeys, about ending up in Bradford, and most importantly making a home here, finding hope, a new start and making significant contributions to society – and this is what we want to celebrate.”

Five people then told their stories of migration to Bradford.

Mahmood Mohammed, Stronger Communities Manager, who travelled to the UK from Uganda aged seven, came to Bradford via London and Sheffield.

Dr Manoj Joshi MBE DL, a Ugandan refugee who took the lead on bringing the exhibition to Bradford, talked about the shock announcement of the expulsion of 50,000 Asians who were British passport holders when he was only 21.

He spoke candidly of the journey from Uganda, arriving in the UK on October 23, 1972.

Dr Joshi said: “At the airport, a lady came up to us, put a blanket over us and said ‘you are safe now’. Those words still resonate in my ears.”

Shamim Eimaan, the Director of Eimaan Culture and Community Services CIC, talked about coming over to the UK when she was six and how her family had originally moved from India to Uganda, before being caught up in the expulsion.

Nigel Skinner talked about his birth in 1955 in Barbados, the same year his father left for England to earn money for the family, after Caribbeans were invited to help rebuild Britain following the Second World War.

Mr Skinner said: "I had an identity crisis.

“I was brought up in a black community but transported to an area where the majority of people were white. This was something I struggled with for decades.”

The final speaker was Nigel Guy MBE, Director of Windrush Generations UK, who helped put together the exhibition and told his own Windrush generation story.

The exhibitions will run until Tuesday, November 14, and are displayed around the East End of Bradford Cathedral.

The exhibition can be viewed during the Cathedral’s regular opening hours of Monday to Saturday from 10am to 4pm, and around services.