About the Project
The Exile. The post-war Polish migration to the UK
Polish migration to the UK under communism
The Freedom. Polish migration to the UK after the EU enlargement
Local specificity: the Poles in Birmingham


About the project

The project 'from Exile to Freedom' aims to portray the new Polish migration in the UK, how the new communities are being formed and to present their heritage and culture. The project will introduce the Polish communities to wider society as knowledge about Poles is very stereotypical and the media coverage is mainly negative. We will be presenting individual histories, showing the reason for the migration which can combat negative stereotypes. Recent migration influx is not purely economic; Polish communities are active, have long history, reach traditions and culture. We believe that bringing this understanding will benefit all the communities and improve integration and community cohesion.

This presentation will also place the recent migrants in the wider context of existing Polish communities, the project will also present the earlier migration flows. The oral history part of the project will include migrants who arrived in the UK during or just after the Second World War, and the 70' and 80' political refugees. The project will present Polish contribution to the British society by showing individual stories, places, and organisations that have existed in the UK for at least 60 years.

The project aim to bring 'old' and 'new 'migrant's together as this distinction is very strong and there is tension between these groups. The work on the project and presentation will integrate people and communities.