Tracing the memories of London Chinatown

Old picture of Lisle Street where SeeWoo Supermarket is housed today
Old picture of Lisle Street where SeeWoo Supermarket is housed today

Supported by a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund, the Chinese Mental Health Association (CMHA) is now conducting an oral history research project which aims to trace the memories of London Chinatown. Nee Hao readers are invited to participate or volunteer in this fascinating project.

Project co-ordinator Rebecca Tang says ‘London’s Chinatown was officially recognised as an important area in the capital city, this project will represent the contribution of the first generation Chinese migrants as a whole community to the history of London. 

This is the best time to capture the stories of the original pioneers in Chinatown, just before we lose them. We hope that their contribution will be recognised; and the whole community will celebrate the success with them’.

St John's Hospital for Dermatology - The present building in Lisle Street was constructed in 1758 and maintains its gabled frontage and original fenestration today
St John’s Hospital for Dermatology –
The present building in Lisle Street, constructed in 1758 and maintains its gabled frontage and original fenestration

The aim is to capture the memories and life stories of the people who have built, formed and defined the living image and character of Chinatown. CMHA would like as many people as possible to participate in this project as the heritage of Chinatown belongs to everyone in the community.

Far East Restaurant - This establishment has kept the same name since it opened in the 1960s
Far East Restaurant – This establishment has kept the same name since it opened in the 1960s

Aiming to promote learning and participation of the history of London Chinatown, the 2-year project will develop a range of multimedia resources. Participation and support from all parties, groups, communities and individuals are welcome.

CMHA are planning to interview 100 Chinese elders who were an integral part of the early development of Chinatown. If you are one of them, they would like you to take part in the interview, to hear your story.

For further info please contact

Rebecca on 020 7613 1008 or email: [email protected]

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