New images of Birmingham’s Stratford Road unveiled

A people’s history of Stratford Road: a story of immigration and changing communities.

Blown up to three metres high, eleven images of Stratford Road residents will be housed on Stratford Road Baptist Church and the former Hubb Community Arts Centre.

They are accompanied by short audio clips housed in purpose-built sound pods by pioneering artist Brian Duffy, best known for his work with the Modified Toy Orchestra.

The works form the highlight of Sampad South Asian Arts’ My Route exhibition trail – the end point of an 18-month community heritage project, supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund.

The free My Route exhibition trail aims to paint a picture of what it is to live and work on Stratford Road, giving an insight into the rich social history of the area.

Stratford Road has long been an arrival point for new migrants arriving in Birmingham, many of whom have settled and become important members of the community.

The photographs include Harish Wara, who came to Birmingham in the 1970s from East Africa. Harry set up Monique Tailoring in the 1980s and has been selling fine menswear to local residents ever since. He is also Chair of the Shree Ram Mandir on Walford Road and now lives in Hall Green.

Also featured is Josett Lynch, who arrived in Birmingham with her husband from Jamaica in the 1960s. Jossett became a school teacher when it was extremely rare to see Black women in professional jobs; her husband founded one of the first home-based churches in Birmingham to serve the African-Carribbean community.

The photography installation is accompanied by a series of associated exhibitions and events on and around Stratford Road.