Hillingdon celebrates Polish heritage and culture in festival at Uxbridge Library

Come and celebrate Poland and the Polish community at Uxbridge Library, which is hosting a dedicated Polish festival on the centenary of Poland regaining independence, opening with a special exhibition on Friday 27 April.

As this year is the centenary of the Royal Air Force (RAF) the library is also hosting a temporary exhibition on the Polish airmen's contribution to victory in the Second World War, in which Polish pilots constituted the second largest Allied contingent after the British - writes hillingdon.gov.uk 

RAF Northolt was the home to the most successful Polish fighter squadron, No. 303. The festival includes a talk by squadron historian, as well as Polish folk music, dance, storytelling and food.  

Jean Palmer, Deputy Chief Executive and Corporate Director of Residents Services at Hillingdon Council, said: "There is a large population of Polish people and those with Polish ancestry living in Hillingdon. This is a special year for the Polish community, so we wanted to celebrate and enjoy Polish culture and the positive contribution made to our community."  

The Polish squadron exhibition opens on Friday 27 April in Uxbridge Library Atrium. A full programme of Polish cultural events is scheduled over the weekend of 3 to 5 May. Polish Heritage Day is held every year on the first weekend after Polish Constitution Day which is 3 May.  

Polish special event programme  


From Friday 27 April there will be a special exhibition to commemorate the role of Polish Squadron No.303 which flew from RAF Northolt. The squadron was commanded by Wing Commander Ronald Gustave Kellett. His personal effects, including medals, are on display at the Battle of Britain Bunker Exhibition and Visitor Centre.  

Thursday 3 May:

  • 11am to midday - Storytime and crafts
    Storytime and crafts with the under 5s, including traditional stories and flag making.  

Friday 4 May:

  • 10am to midday - Cake and craft
    Coffee morning with Polish cake-tasting and a chance to try the traditional Polish art of paper flower-making.
  • 2pm to 3pm  - Storytime and craft
    Storytime and crafts, including traditional stories and flag making. For the under-5s.
    Please book: contact Uxbridge Library or email: culturebite@hillingdon.gov.uk
  • 7.30pm to 9.30pm - Fighter squadron No.303
    Talk by author Richard King on the most successful Fighter Command unit in the Battle of Britain, Polish No.303 Squadron. Czech Sergeant Josef Frantisek, from No.303 was the top scoring pilot with 17 confirmed kills.
    Air Chief Marshal Sir Hugh Dowding, who led Fighter Command, would later write: "Had it not been for the magnificent material contributed by the Polish squadrons and their unsurpassed gallantry, I hesitate to say that the outcome of the Battle would have been the same."
    Please book: contact Uxbridge Library or email: culturebite@hillingdon.gov.uk

Saturday 5 May:

  • 10.30am to midday - Traditional Polish storytelling
    Join us for stories and crafts for children 5-10 years. Traditional tales followed by the chance for children to act out the drama with a dragon in attendance. Elisabeth Kozmian, author and artist of Polish fairy tales, will be joining us for the craft session afterwards to make a paper dragon. Suitable for children 5-10 years.
  • 2.30pm to 4pm - Polish song and dance
    Polish song and dance group Leśna Polana demonstrates traditional Polish dance with an English commentary, followed by a chance for spectators to try out simple steps with the group. Accompanied by an accordionist.


  • For more information www.hillingdon.gov.uk/libraryevents

  • For more information on the Battle of Britain Bunker www.hillingdon.gov.uk/bunker

  • Exhibition credit: Polish Air Force Memorial Committee, Mr Richard Kornicki CBE DL and Hillingdon Heritage.

  • 3 May is Constitution Day in Poland, commemorating the date in 1791 when Poland proclaimed its modern codified constitution as the first country in Europe, and the second in the world after the United States.

  • 2 May is celebrated in Poland and in Polish communities around the world as the Polish Diaspora Day and Polish Flag Day.

  • The project's logo is based on the design of the white-and-red chequerboard - a symbol painted on the Polish airplanes during the Battle of Britain 1940 and inspired by the Polish flag.

  • During the Second World War and later in the time of communism, the United Kingdom was the refuge of the Polish government-in-exile and free Poles. The Polish community in the UK includes the descendants of wartime and anti-communist exiles and those who decided to move to Britain after Poland joined the EU in 2004.

 Read more news of London on our site.

Hillingdon Polishheritage UxbridgeLibrary
If you notice an error, highlight the text you want and press Ctrl + Enter to report it to the editor
18 views in november
I recommend
No recommendations yet


Post your comment to communicate and discuss this article.

Police have launched a manhunt after religious idols and Diwali donations were stolen from two north London temples in early morning raids. The Met said the early morning burglaries were being treated as linked and released a CCTV image of a hooded suspect on Saturday. Officers also urged faith leaders to be vigilant against future incidents. The first happened at the Shree Swaminarayan Temple in Willesden Lane, Brent, on November 9. While the priests were...
Rail commuters have been told not to attempt to travel into London Waterloo after engineering works overran. South Western Railway (SWR) passengers using the route into London Waterloo from Surbiton were warned not to travel on Monday morning. Disruption is expected to last for the entire day and the Network Rail engineering works will not be finished until 8.39am at the earliest.  The rail operator said Woking, Surbiton, Raynes Park and Earlsfield station...
Some 82 people have been arrested after hundreds of protesters gathered in central London in attempts to block five bridges on Saturday, as they demanded the Government take greater action on climate change. The group Extinction Rebellion encouraged people to perform a sit-in across Southwark, Blackfriars, Waterloo, Westminster and Lambeth bridges on following a co-ordinated week of action around the UK. Following their closures, all bridges have now reope...
Almost one million crimes of fly-tipping were reported by councils across England during 2017-18, the first fall in five years. Councils recorded 997,553 incidents of illegal dumping, an average of more than 2,700 a day. It was a slight decrease on the 1,011,000 in 2016-17 and is the first time the figure has dropped since 2013. The government said two-thirds of fly-tipping involved household waste. It did not reveal the total cost to taxpayers of clearing...
Children living in London boroughs with high diesel pollution suffer from stunted lung capacity, putting them at risk of early death, a study has said. Pupils living in areas that failed to meet EU nitrogen dioxide limits were at increased risk of lung disease, researchers found. The research studied 2,000 London school children over five years. "We are raising a generation of children reaching adulthood with stunted lungs," researchers said. Academics fro...
A private school teacher has been left partially blind after another woman smashed a glass in her face during a night out.  Lisa Bertsch, 30, was at the Be At One bar in Richmond when she was hit in her right eye. The tumbler shattered and left Ms Bertsch, who lives with her boyfriend in Kingston, needing emergency surgery. She said the attack happened when she tried to stop the assailant pouring a cocktail over her friend’s belongings. Ms Bertsch added th...
Discarded syringes have been left in play areas and car parks as a BBC investigation found councils were being called 50 times a day to remove them. Figures obtained by the BBC showed councils handled 18,496 cases in 2017-18, a rise of 7% in two years. A volunteer pricked by a discarded needle has told how he faces a wait for HIV and hepatitis test results. The Department for Communities and Local Government said it was "committed to doing more to reduce d...
The German Zeppelin bombing campaign of London during WWI has been brought to the fore again days before the centenary of the war in a film made by schoolchildren. The first ever example of strategic bombing in history - a tactic used in total war with the goal of defeating the enemy by destroying their morale or economy - was during the First World War Emperor Kaiser Wilhelm II initially banned attacks on the capital because of his close connection to the...
London’s busiest train station has recruited a hawk to scare off pigeons following a spate of complaints from angry passengers. Aria, a five-year-old harris hawk, has begun patrolling Waterloostation in a bid to stop people having to “fight" off pigeons while eating. There are 27 food and drink retailers at the Network Rail-managed station, and many customers have complained about pigeons pecking at food and leaving a mess. The birds have been pictured sit...