Editor’s Column: To be or not to be ‘Bradistan’
To be or not to be ‘Bradistan’
If you didn’t all know by now, then you will get to know how much of a proud Bradfordian I am. Yes, for our regular readers, I’m having a rant again on our lovely city. A blog headline caught my eye recently which read ‘BRADISTAN COUNCIL AT IT AGAIN!!!!’
The post was about how a Keighley patriotic cafe owner was ordered to remove Union Jack flags from railings on the pavement outside her business claiming a Bradford Council official told her daughter they were ‘racist’. The Council issued a statement stating it was not down to racism but down to safety reasons and people are often asked to remove banners or advertising on railings. Well, whatever the argument, it’s the word ‘Bradistan’ I have a real problem with.
Lately wherever I look I seem to come across the word Bradistan, on social media, even some of my friends saying “I’m coming to Bradistan”. Apparently the word Bradistan has come about because of the large Pakistani population in Bradford. Well I don’t see Leicester being called Leicesteridia, due to their large (much larger than Bradford’s Pakistani population might I add) Indian population!
Bradford is a diverse, multi-cultural city and if we are to show that we are much more united as a city and not segregated, then being labelled Bradistan does us no credit. It was lovely to read a blog by a fellow Leeds resident called Keith Nuttal, who moved from Leeds to Bradford in 1992. He goes on to say he’d had enough of living in Leeds, which he found congested, hostile and disappointing. By contrast Bradford people are friendly and unassuming, if a little rough around the edges. He goes on to say how he finds the nickname Bradistan for Bradford, politically incorrect and that as far as he was concerned it was a cosmopolitan and curry house haven.
Mr Nuttal rightly highlights that Bradford was once a wealthy industrial centre, but since losing out on the wool trade, the city has been struggling for an identity since. Bradford is not just the UK’s curry capital, but also City of Film, with world class art (1853 Gallery in Salts Mill), The Bronte Museum and so much more, which includes the prospering and rich South Asian culture. It’s unfair to label a city of such rich of history and diverse culture.
In my opinion, if we are ever to shave off the negativity of Bradford and put the positive back, we must come up with a better nickname for a start. Agree or not anyone using the word Bradistan from now on should be fined in my opinion…maybe the money could be put to marketing the city which is more representative of the amazing things that surround us.
To be or not to be Bradistan….! Your thoughts please!