My journey to and Life in Britain

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Date:1960 - 1965 (c.)

Description:My Expectations of coming to Britain;

My expectations were that I could find a job and earn some money, and come back to my country and live a better life. Farming in Punjab was just working hard and living from hand to mouth, with no prospect of savings or a job. I had never thought I was going to settle in the UK.

I was living in a house owned by a Punjabi Sikh. My cousin was living there (88 Balsall Heath Road, Edgbaston, Birmingham B5.) The people living in the house treated me very well. It was the tradition of that time that a new arrival didn’t have to pay rent or living expenses until he found a job. I was asked to cook, though. A friend of mine found me a job in a factory near Digbeth. It was cold in January with no washing facilities. There were whites, Indians, Pakistanis and Afro Caribbean working there. People from all different countries, backgrounds and religions helped one another. I think that all the people from abroad have the same expectations. Most of the people used to drink beer at the weekends and there used to be so many pubs. People used this place to meet up and get together. People used to drink sensibly and moderately.

I did not like the job due to cold weather and lack of washing facilities. I was not getting used to the jobs. I started looking for another job and my friend told me to go to Birmid Qualcast, a group of foundries in Smethwick.


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