Steel city to host international festival celebrating migration

21 Jun

Sheffield is celebrating diversity and recognising the positive impact that migration has on our city by warmly welcoming the Migration Matters Festival.

Taking place across five days, from 20 to 24 June, during the national Refugee Week, the festival is bringing Sheffield’s communities together through art, performance, music, food and film.

Sheffield was the UK’s first City of Sanctuary and it is a city that remains rich with diversity and interconnecting communities. This year’s festival will celebrate the city’s history and culture with a vibrant and inclusive series of events.

There will be more than 50 acts as part of the celebrations taking place across six inner city venues (Theatre Delicatessen, DINA, The Art House, Sheffield Theatres, The Showroom Cinema, The Montgomery Theatre), as well as various outdoor spaces throughout the city centre.

In the line-up there are award winning artists, community projects, global and local charities, Sheffield based performers and international musicians. Headline acts include: Inua Ellams, Third Angel, Stand and Be Counted Theatre  and PSYCHEdelight.

Councillor Jim Steinke, Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods and Community Safety at Sheffield City Council said: “This week let’s celebrate the fact that migration is what makes Sheffield a great city. Great cities are built on migration.

“We are proud to be supporting the festival and helping to raise awareness of the fact that the number of people who become refugees across the globe is on the increase. Cities have a vital role to play in supporting them to begin new lives in new places.”

The festival begins on World Refugee Day 2018 on Wednesday 20 June. This is an annual event, held on the same date each year, and 2018 is the 18th year of the event, run by the United Nations Refugee Agency, to state that the world supports and stands with refugees. The event is about raising global awareness of global responsibility for refugees.

World Refugee Day honours the strength and courage of refugees and encourages public awareness and support for people who have had to flee their home lands because of conflict or natural disaster. It reminds us that refugees have faced cold, hunger, trauma, despair, disease, violence and loss.

World Refugee Day also marks the launch of the ‘#With Refugees’ petition, which highlights refugees’ needs and potential rights. Organisations from across the world will be signing the statement of solidarity ahead of the day.

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees ‘#WithRefugees’ campaign supports the development of the global compact on refugees. To date the campaign has almost 2 million petition signatures, one of which is Sheffield City Council’s.

For more information about the week’s festival events visit

All of the week’s festival events are pay-what-you-decide and booking in advance is recommended.


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