Many immigrant communities have arrived and prospered in the UK since the end of the Second World War, mostly encouraged by governments looking to fill gaps in the labour force.
The experience of these communities and their attempts at coming to terms with life in Britain have been documented by Panorama over the years, as these clips show.
THE WEST INDIAN EXPERIENCE
Post-Second World War West Indian immigration to the UK had begun in earnest in 1948 with the arrival of the Empire Windrush ship. By 1967 a generation born in the UK was coming of age. The problem of still being deemed a foreigner – with all the prejudice that came with it, primarily relating to discrimination in employment and housing – in the country of your birth was now taking centre stage. In April 1967, Panorama travelled to Liverpool to see how this second generation were faring.
THE IRISH EXPERIENCE
In response to a perceived influx of immigrants, 1962 saw the creation of the Commonwealth Immigrants Act which placed limits on those who could migrate to the UK. Historic links with Ireland allowed migrants from the Irish Republic to continue to arrive and work in the UK though. The Irish community in London still faced prejudice and stereotyping over rowdy behaviour and drunkenness, as well as over their exemption from the forthcoming immigration restrictions, as Panorama discovered in November 1961.
THE ASIAN EXPERIENCE
The sudden expulsion by the Ugandan leader Idi Amin of the entire Asian population of Uganda in 1972, saw almost 30,000 dual passport-holders arrive in Britain.
Almost all of whom were granted asylum in the UK. In November 1972, Panorama went to Leicester to gauge how the city was coping with the new arrivals in the midst of its established immigrant communities.
THE PAKISTANI EXPERIENCE
The 1950s saw British governments continue to encourage migration to the UK from former colonies of the Empire to fill the UK’s manpower shortage. It was during this period that Pakistani immigration to the UK began in earnest. Often, the male head of the family would arrive in the UK to find employment and a home, with the wife and children following. In February 1975 Panorama filmed with a newly arrived wife and her children as they embarked upon a new life in Bradford.
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