Image: Timothy Neat, The Victorian market and the city of Leeds (series) circa 1965-66. Copyright Timothy Neat.
Touchstone’s BME Dementia Service has been working closely with art organisation Pavilion and sound artist Ryoko Akama to gather oral history recordings of the life stories and experiences of older people who were first generation migrant workers in textile factories in Leeds. These recordings are currently being showcased as part of Ryoko Akama’s Loiner Or exhibition at Leeds Industrial Museum. The exhibition is open until the 1st April 2018, and will finish with a closing celebration on the 31st march from 2-3:30pm.

“Sound artist Ryoko Akama, whose sound sculpture loiner or was commissioned by Pavilion, will perform alongside Japanese guitarist Taku Sugimoto and vocalist Minami Saeki; poet Ian Duhig will read a new poem written especially for the occasion, accompanied by a spinning mule; and singer Ahmed Kaysher, harmoniumist Amal Podder and percussionist Narayan Dey will perform a selection of Bengali folk songs written against British Imperialism in India.”

Please click here for more information about the celebration event.
We would like to thank our BME Dementia Service Users for their generosity in sharing their stories, which has been a valuable contribution to sharing the lives and experiences of migrant workers in Leeds during the 20th Century, and a huge thank you to Pavilion who have worked hard to ensure their important stories are shared through this platform.
Interwoven Histories aims to engage elders from different BME communities in creative art activities. If you know someone or a group of people who may like to get involved in this project, please don’t hesitate to get in touch. This work is part of the on-going partnership between Touchstone and Pavilion and is funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF).
For more information on the Interwoven Histories project please contact:
Georgina Baker (Arts Worker – BME Dementia Service)
Touchstone Support Centre, 53-55 Harehills Avenue, Leeds, LS8 4EX
0113 219 2727