Tandana Archive: papers of the Bradford and Sheffield Asian Youth Movements

Scope and Content

This collection consists of archive material relating to the organisation and activities of Asian Youth Movements in Bradford and Sheffield. The archive documents the establishment and development of the Asian Youth Movements including details of their Constitution, minutes of meetings, correspondence, procedures for new members, newsletters and press releases.

A substantial amount of material relates to campaigns supported by the Bradford and Sheffield groups. These relate to local and national anti- deportation and defence campaigns including the Bradford 12, Newham 8 and Newham 7. Further material relates to campaigns against racism, racist attacks, police harassment, workers' rights and solidarity campaigns.

The archive contains papers relating to immigration, police monitoring, racism in schools and ethnic minority organisations. There is also information concerning employment and training, community support, cultural events, and related newspaper cuttings and publications.

Administrative / Biographical History

The archive contains papers created and collected by the Asian Youth Movements established in Bradford and Sheffield in the late 1970's and early 1980's. The Asian Youth Movement in Bradford continued the activities of the Indian Progressive Youth Association which had been formed in the city in 1977. It was decided that 'Asian Youth Movement' (AYM) was a more inclusive name and the group became known as this in 1978.

The aims and objectives outlined in the Constitution of the AYM included promoting "the interests of young people from (or originating from) the Indian sub-continent, i.e. Bangladesh, India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, in the areas of political, cultural, social and sports activities". Further objectives within the constitution included opposing all forms of discrimination, supporting national liberation movements in other countries and keeping members informed of developments taking place in the Indian sub-continent.

AYM (Bradford) instigated and supported campaigns both locally and nationally relating to deportation cases, racist attacks, police harassment, workers' rights, racism in schools and defence campaigns for groups such as the Bradford 12 and Newham 7. They also demonstrated solidarity for national liberation movements in countries such as Ireland, Palestine and South Africa, supporting, for example, the Palestine Solidarity Campaign and the Bradford Anti-Apartheid Group.

AYM (Bradford) became established within the Bradford community and acquired their own premises, the Saathi Centre. They ran successfully as an organisation until 1986-87. The group were influential on the formation of other Asian Youth Movements across the country and were instrumental in efforts to establish a National Asian Youth Movement.

AYM (Sheffield) was formed in 1982 following the success of the Sheffield Bradford 12 support group. They supported local and national campaigns focussing on racist attacks and police harassment. For example they campaigned against violence towards taxi drivers in Sheffield and supported local families experiencing racial violence and intimidation. AYM (Sheffield) also supported national defence campaigns, for example, organising groups in Sheffield to campaign for the Newham 8 and Newham 7.

Like AYM (Bradford) the Sheffield group were involved in anti-deportation cases and support for international and local workers' rights campaigns including the miners' strikes and trade union activities. The Sheffield Defence Campaign was later formed and consisted of individuals and anti-racist groups including the Asian Youth Movement, the Sheffield Campaign Against Immigration Laws and Labour Party groups.


The archive is divided into two sub-fonds and arranged into the following series:

Asian Youth Movement (Bradford):

  • 1. Administrative papers
  • 2. Papers of Bradford Anti-Fascist Defence Committee
  • 3. Papers of Dewsbury Defence Committee
  • 4. Papers relating to racism and schools
  • 5. Papers relating to Ray Honeyford and Drummond Middle School
  • 6. Papers relating to National Asian Youth Movement and other regional groups
  • 7. Papers relating to deportation cases and defence campaigns
  • 8. Papers relating to campaigning organisations
  • 9. Newspaper cuttings and publications
  • 10. Additional material

Asian Youth Movement (Sheffield)

  • 1. Administrative papers
  • 2. Papers relating to anti-deportation campaigns
  • 3. Papers relating to defence campaigns
  • 4. Papers relating to immigration
  • 5. Papers relating to education
  • 6. Papers relating to campaigning organisations
  • 7. Newspaper cuttings, cultural events and Sheffield organisations
  • 8. Newsletters and publications
  • 9. Additional material

Access Information

Access conditions apply to a number of records in this collection. Please contact the Centre for more details.

Custodial History

The archive consists of papers collected by Anandi Ramamurthy as a part of a project to document the development of the Asian Youth Movements in Britain. The majority of the material was collected from individual members of the Asian Youth Movements and the papers in this collection relate to the Bradford and Sheffield groups. The archive was transferred to the Ahmed Iqbal Ullah Race Relations Resource Centre in 2014.

Related Material

Available in Manchester Central Library: Ramamurthy, Anandi, Kala Tara: a history of The Asian Youth Movements in Britain in the 1970s and 1980s, extracts from interviews conducted for the Second Generation Asians Resisting Racism Project (Preston: University of Central Lancashire, 2007)

Ramamurthy, Anandi, Black Star: Britain's Asian Youth Movements (London: Pluto Press, 2013)

Personal Names