Bradford: The City of the immigrants’ dreams?

The BBC2 station aired a two-part document about the life in the modern Bradford. The movie, of which a big part was devoted to this city’s immigrants, could not miss the strong Polish accent. Hundred years ago, Bradford was the richest and most developed industrial city in the UK. Today, when many factories went bust, the ambitious entrepreneurs who are determined to fight for survival, are looking for happiness here. Such was to be many immigrants - says the BBC2 channel, who prepared a two-part documentary, entitled "Bradford City of Dreams". The second part is dedicated entirely to foreigners who find their place in the half a million population city in the north of England. Long ago, people could not distinguish the words ‘kabanos’ from ‘cabbage’. Today, times have changed - says the owner of several shops in Bradford, a native of Pakistan Danish Patel. He inherited a small shop, which his father started in 1978, and developed it into a family business, adapting it to the requirements of the market. This means no more no less, just a huge section of Polish food.

- At the beginning there were two shelves, then four, until over sudden the whole store was filled with Polish products - says the owner and shows a large piece of smoked bacon to the camera. - My Polish customers buy the whole kilograms before Christmas. I do not know what they're doing with it – anyway this is not for me - he laughs.

However, the competition is strong, as there are a few Polish shops in the city already, and in tough economic times you cannot discourage your customers by high prices. Therefore, Danish Patel and his son, who is helping him in business, must sell cheap and attract the customers by a number of promotions. Since Victorian times Bradford has been attracting immigrants from Eastern Europe. However, it was only after 2004 when the city was full of Poles and Slovaks - there are currently 12,000 of them here. The effect that visitors have on the landscape of the place is very visible - shops offering Polish and so-called Eastern products, Polish restaurants and various Polish companies. One of these is a smokehouse founded by a Polish man.

Marcin, that’s the name of the character in the television document, is a butcher specializing in pork. He came to England seven years ago and began working in a factory. He did realize, however, that in order to achieve something, he must create his own business.Although his English skills were rather non-existing, it did not put him off and Marcin started creating a small smokehouse in the back garden. Traditional sausage and ham quickly gained the recognition in the community - not only within Polish people. Marcin then decided to expand the company and set up his own shop with smoked sausage and fresh meat of his production. One of the English shops suggested that he sells his products at farmers' markets – the Polish man is of a good cheer and wanders further plans for the future.

- It's a pleasure, and also a rarity in modern times, to go beyond the flashy headlines or politicians password and notice the immigrant communities in a completely positive light – wrote Gerard O'Donovan in his review of the program in the "Daily Telegraph".