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From the Belgrave Road to the Golden Mile: the transformation of Asians in Leicester. Pippa Virdee De Montfort University 17 March 2008. History of migration. Post-war labour shortage 40s & 50s – Afro-Caribbean Early 60s – Pakistani and Gujarati Late 60s & early 70s – East African Asians .

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from the belgrave road to the golden mile the transformation of asians in leicester

From the Belgrave Road to the Golden Mile: the transformation of Asians in Leicester

Pippa Virdee

De Montfort University

17 March 2008

history of migration
History of migration
  • Post-war labour shortage
  • 40s & 50s – Afro-Caribbean
  • Early 60s – Pakistani and Gujarati
  • Late 60s & early 70s – East African Asians
slide3

South Asian Migration into Leicester, 1951-2001 according to place of birth

Source: Bonney, 2003 and National Census

religion census 2001

Leicester

England & Wales

Christian

44.7

71.8

No religion

17.4

14.8

Hindu

14.7

1.1

Muslim

11.0

3.0

Religion not stated

7.1

7.7

Sikh

4.2

0.6

Other religions

0.4

0.3

Buddhist

0.2

0.3

Jewish

0.2

0.5

Religion: Census 2001
slide6

Leicester wards since 2001

Hindus – Latimer, Belgrave and Rushy Mead

Muslims – Spinney Hill and Stoneygate

Sikhs - scattered

distinguishing features
Distinguishing features
  • Large East African presence
  • High number of “twice migrants”
  • Home of the Jain community
  • Multicultural ‘role model’
  • Will become the first “minority white city”
    • Associated problem of ‘white flight’
transformation of the city
Transformation of the city
  • 1960s-1970s – Reputation for racism
    • Hostility of the local press
    • Involved in the revival of the city
  • 1980s-1990s – model of successful multiculturalism
  • Present – new wave of migration
    • 10,000 Somalis via the Netherlands
    • Polish migrants
themes of the workshop
Themes of the workshop
  • The Leicester Role Model
  • Narrating Asian Leicester
  • Migration, Food and Integration
  • Sport and Ethnicity in Leicester
  • Religion, Identity and Dance
themes and issues
Themes and issues
  • Branding and marketing of Leicester by the city council
  • Role of festivals
    • Diwali, Navratri, Belgrave Mela, Caribbean Carnival, and Pride Mardi Gras
themes and issues1
Themes and issues
  • Great diversity in the religious landscape
    • Role of the city planning policy
  • Active participation by the migrant community in local government
further research
Further research…
  • Focus has been on the economic and political contribution of South Asians
    • Reflects the entrepreneurial background of migrants
  • Minorities within minorities and the intra-relationship
  • Relationship with the ‘homeland’
    • Complicated by the ‘twice migrants’
  • Impact and incorporation of new migrants
key texts
Key texts
  • J. Herbert, Joanna, Negotiating Boundaries in the City: Migration, Ethnicity, and Gender in Britain, (2008)
  • R. Bonney and W. Le Goff, ‘Leicester's Cultural Diversity in the Context of the British Debate on Multiculturalism’ International Journal of Diversity in Organisations, Communities and Nations (2007)
  • G. Singh, ‘Multiculturalism in Contemporary Britain: Reflections on the 'Leicester Model‘’ International Journal on Multicultural Societies (2003)
  • P. Panayi, ‘The Spicing up of English Provincial Life: The History of Curry in Leicester’ in A. Kershen, Food in The Migrant Experience (2002)
  • G. Singh and J. Martin, Asian Leicester (2002)
  • M. Banks, Organizing Jainism in India and England, (1992)
  • V. Marrett, Immigrants Settling in the City (1989)