|Cllr Ted Cassidy and Suleman Nagdi, chatting inside the main display space of the exhibition|
From Kampala to Leicester (the exhibition itself and associated events) has run at New Walk Museum and Art Gallery (and a number of other venues around the city) from 14 July and was to conclude this Sunday, 30 September. Due to popular demand, it has been extended by one week.
There are a number of distinguished guests among the 60 or so attendees this evening, including Mayor of Leicester, Sir Peter Soulsby; Deputy Mayor, Cllr Rory Palmer; Lord Mayor of Leicester, Cllr Abdul Osman; Deputy Lord Lieutenant of Leicestershire, Suleman Nagdi; two Assistant Mayors and half a dozen City Councillors. Director of Leicester City Council's Museums and Arts Service, Sarah Levitt, presides over the formal part of the reception. Sir Peter gives a speech, as does Cllr Sundip Meghani. Cllr Meghani is the son and grandson of refugees from Uganda who came to this country with little more than the clothes on their back. He now enjoys the distinction of being the youngest City Councillor currently serving in Leicester. He proposed a motion to the City Council on 13 September, recognising the contribution that Ugandan Asians have made to Leicester over the past 40 years. You can read all about this in more detail on Cllr Meghani's blog (including a video recording of his speech to Council). We also hear written testimonies of four people from diverse backgrounds, not natives of the city but who have come to call Leicester home (two of them having come here from Uganda in 1972).
There's even a period feel in the catering tonight. Among the delicacies on offer, we have that 70s classic, cheese and pineapple on a cocktail stick, but with an Asian twist: the cheese is paneer. That's so Leicester!