Kurds find a home in south Leeds

A new local community group – Kurdish House Leeds (KHL) – is getting stuck into life in south Leeds, coming in numbers to help at the monthly Friends Of Hunslet Moor litter picks, and helping the Hamara Centre refurbish the Old Cockburn Centre in Hunslet Moor, where they last weekend hosted a packed vibrant cultural celebration.

KHL was founded just last year (2018), and is made up of Kurds from across Leeds, but is particularly centred around Beeston and Hunslet Moor – where several of the key players, including Rebwar and Kashan Sharazure, live. They are becoming become involved in the wider life of the community, and also run cultural and educational programmes for themselves – and recently helped renovate Old Cockburn in order for it to become their community base.

Last Saturday’s event (23 February) saw 200+ attendees of all ages, including Brenda Barlow and other members of the Hunslet Moor group, Ed Carlisle, Mohammed Farouk (chair of Hamara), Cllr Paul Wray, Nick Lalvani and colleagues from Touchstone, and many others. It was a spectacular event, with children singing the Kurdish National Anthem, dancing, and a massive spread of Kurdish foods.

Rebwar told us:

“Since we founded Kurdish House last September, we have put their heart and souls into the regeneration of our community – and the bigger community too. We aim to strengthen our community by promoting our language and culture, resolving family feuds, and so on – but also, crucially we need to increase cultural relationships and integration among Kurds, British citizens, and other ethnicities, by working together on environmental projects and more.”

Brenda, for the Hunslet Moor group, commented:

“It’s been a joy to have the Kurdish community helping out regularly. They are so dedicated to helping and getting to know our local community. They want Leeds to be a clean living space, just as we do. We’re happy to welcome them, and look forward to a cleaner community with their help.”

And Ed Carlisle added:

“KHL are a great example of a cultural organisation that are outward-focused, and engaged in the life of the wider community – whilst also creating a rich local culture amongst themselves. They’re a huge asset to this area, and it’s going to be great working with them in the years to come.”

To find out more about KHL, find them on facebook here. The Kurdish people are an ancient people group living in the mountainous region between Iraq, Iran, Turkey, and Syria; they have been engaged in a centuries-long battle for independence; more info here.

Old Cockburn is the old high school sports hall, on Primrose Lane facing Joseph Priestley College, currently under the management of the Hamara Centre: further info here. After major refurbishments in the past months, they aim to have it fully open to the public within a coming month.

The Friends of Hunslet Moor is a neighbourhood group committed to improving the Hunslet Moor park, and the surrouding area (including the Longroyds, Dobsons, Moor Crescents, and so on); full info here.


This post was written on behalf of the Friends of Hunslet Moor. We encourage anyone living or working in South Leeds to use this website to tell their news. You can either use the Create an article for South Leeds Life page, or email us at: info@southleedslife.com.


One Reply to “Kurds find a home in south Leeds”

  1. Only way to improve the area is to get rid of private landlords in the longroyds especially.pity so much interest wasn’t taken by councillors in the sports hall 20 years ago when local kids wanted to use it

Comments are closed.