Faith in Society is working closely in partnership with the India Overseas Trust in developing the 50th-anniversary project for British Uganda Asians. The partnership has already been successful in securing National Lottery Heritage Funding.
18 September 1972, the first evacuation flight of Asians fleeing from Uganda landed at London’s Stansted Airport. The Ugandan dictator, General Idi Amin, served 90 days’ notice on 60,000 Asians to leave the country. Almost half of them arrived and resettled in the United Kingdom.
To coincide with the 50th Anniversary, of this important event in British history, a commemoration project “Welcome to Britain!” has been launched.
“Welcome to Britain!” is an oral history project capturing the recollections of those who volunteered to help with the reception of Asians from Uganda. The project will record the stories of surviving volunteers from the reception camps at Greenham Common in Berkshire, Tonfanau in Wales, and Stradishall in West Suffolk. The volunteers worked tirelessly with the specially created Uganda Resettlement Board to welcome and facilitate the arrival of more than 28,000 Asians from Uganda.
British Ugandan Peer, Lord Jitesh Gadhia, commented: “I welcome this important project to capture the stories of the amazing volunteers who helped to welcome Asians fleeing from Uganda in 1972. This initiative, generously funded by the National Heritage Lottery Fund, could not be more timely, as the UK Government launches ‘Operation Warm Welcome’ for Afghan Refugees. Next year’s 50th Anniversary of the arrival of Ugandan Asians is a moment to express our community’s eternal gratitude to all those who supported us in our hour of need.”