Refugee Week 2017 events in England

There are an enormous number of events planned across England for Refugee Week which begins on Monday 19 June. You can find many of them on the Refugee Week website.

Only a tiny selection are previewed in this blog post. Quakers are running a series of events in London and across England.

The Library in Friends House in London (173-177 Euston Road, Kings Cross, NW1 2BJ) is throwing open its doors on Monday 19 from 11am to 3pm. Quakers have been part of movements to welcome newcomers to Britain for many years. Explore artefacts and stories from past initiatives to assist people seeking sanctuary from the Kindertransport to the present day. No booking required.

Monday 19 at 6.30pm in Friends House, London – Sanctuary in the Media – discussion about what an anti-racist media would look like with a panel that includes co-authors of The Good Immigrant.

Tuesday 20 at 12.30pm in Friends House, London – A time to contemplate in this semi-programmed meeting for worship. No booking required.

Tuesday 20 at 6.30pm in Friends House, London – Sanctuary in Writing – Authors of new writing anthologies Refugee StoriesA Country of Refuge, and Over land Over Sea discuss their first hand experiences of seeking sanctuary in Britain.

Journeymen Theatre’s The Bundle, a powerful and moving piece of theare about forced migration, will be performed in Bull Street Meeting House, Birmingham on Tuesday 20 at 7.15pm.

Multi-story Theatre Company present their interpretation of Shakespeare’s fantastical story Pericles exploring themes of forced migration in Friends Meeting House, Doncaster on Tuesday 20 at 7.30pm.

Wednesday 21 June at 6.30pm – Sanctuary in the Arts – Playwright Gael Le Cornec (The Last Days of Gilda), author Gulwali Passarlay (The Lightless Sky) and film-maker Sue Clayton (Hamedullah: The Road Home) discuss how the arts can help people think differently about people seeking sanctuary.

An evening of talks from organisations supporting refugees in the UK, Europe and crossing the Mediterranean Sea will be held at 6.30pm on Wednesday 21 in Friends Meeting House, Nottingham.

Thursday 22 at 6.30pm in Friends House, London – Sanctuary in Fiction – Novelists Sita Brahmachari, (Red Leaves), Jason Donald (Dalila), Tim Finch (House of Journalists) and Roma Tearne (The Swimmer) discuss the representation of immigration in fiction.

From a Different Viewpoint is an evening discussion about how we can have better conversations around forced migration starts at 7.30pm on Thursday 22 in Friends Meeting House, Ashburton.

The film Fire at Sea (which Focus on Refugees reviewed last year) will be screened at 7.30pm on Thursday 22 in the Quaker Meeting House in Minehead.

Sunday 25 from 11am to 5pm in Friends House, London – Sanctuary Sunday – A day of contemplation and learning, beginning with silent contemplation, continuing with a discussion featuring speakers from Freed Voices, Refugee Action and the Habeus Corpus Project. It will finish with a ‘Refu-tea’ in partnership with the Refugee Council.


My Place… is a is an exhibition of photography by Hassan, a young asylum seeker from Afghanistan. It tells his story and that of his friends as the live as young asylum seekers in Birmingham. The exhibition opens at 7pm on Tuesday 20 in The GAP (498-500 Moseley Road, Balsall Heath, Birmingham, B12 9AH).

To celebrate Refugee Week, Brushstrokes in Smethwick are hosting a singing workshop led by Birmingham’s one and only homeless choir, Choir with No Name. Join them for a fun filled hour of song and fun. No experience needed: just enthusiasm. Friday 23 at 10.30am in St Philips Parish Centre (Watt Street, off Messenger Road, Smethwick, B66 3DA).


Theatre at The Casa in Liverpool presents a one hour play Refugee: Everyone at least should have somewhere to go at 8.30pm on Wednesday 21 June. It’s a devised, collaborative piece connecting the personal lives of people trying to survive whilst being caught within complex international power relations and exploited everywhere they turn. Elements of Greek Theatre are combined with the first-hand testimony of participants – one of whom worked at ‘the Jungle’ camp in Calais – to produce a show which unashamedly treats the plight of refugees with empathy. Tickets are £5 (refugees invited to attend for free) and can be booked online.

Virtual event

An online seminar is being organised by Swansea City of Sanctuary at 1pm on Tuesday 27 to introduce their digital inclusion toolkit. Over an hour free digital tools and resources will be highlighted that can help people seeking sanctuary. Registration required. A face-to-face training session in Swansea will be held the following day on Wednesday 28 between 10am and 1pm.