The Compass

UK: From Syria To Yorkshire

The Compass

As part of the World Service ‘Destination Europe’ series, the BBC’s Owen Bennett-Jones is finding out how Syrian refugees are settling in the northern English city of Bradford in Yorkshire. They were flown directly to Britain as part of a scheme to help the vulnerable living in the Syrian border region. The former British Prime Minister David Cameron pledged to help 20,000 of these people over a five year period, rather than taking those who had made the perilous journey to Europe through smuggler’s routes. So in Bradford, Owen meets people like Nadia, flown to the UK from Iraq – a single mother to a teenager who dreams of her former life in Damascus where she owned a shopping mall and was rich, but who now lives in a damp flat and whose possessions are sparse. Then there is Ayham and his family who became eligible to settle in Britain from Cairo after his younger brother was diagnosed with cancer. Their remarkable stories paint a vivid picture of war-torn Syria and the tragedies they have faced but also of their bravery and hope for a new beginning as they embark on finding their way in Britain. (Photo: Owen in front of the Bradford factory)

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