This Is The Home Of Change

We’re very proud to unveil, This Is The Home Of Change, a mural in our coworking space, crafted over many weeks by local artist Aïcha Bahij.

We gave Aïcha a brief to celebrate Bradford’s past present and future and with an emphasis on femininity, in line with our mission to support female entrepreneurship and the UN Sustainable Development Goals for Gender Equality and Reducing Inequality.

In the photo of Aïcha’s mural above, she’s numbered various elements of the piece. You can find out the significance of each reference to Bradford below…

Do drop by the Hub anytime to see the mural!

This Is The Home Of Change

1 - Armchair

To represent the stone armchair and grandfather clock sculpture on Chapel Street in Little Germany. A celebration of the area’s history, industry and minority communities…

  • Jacob Behrens – Founder of Bradford Chamber of Commerce. Behrens helped to reorganise Bradford Grammar School in 1871, and he helped establish the Great Horton Road Technical College in 1882. In a biography, a colleague was quoted as saying: “He seemed to exist only to be of service to his fellow men”. Behrens was Jewish and was a prominent member of the Anglo-Jewish Association.
  • Founding place of the Independent Labour Party.

2 - Woman on Chair

Reading Rumi’s The Guesthouse…

“Welcome them and treat them honourably.”

3 - Curry Leaves

  • Representing the South-East Asian community in Bradford.
  • Also the numerous charities and Mosques/Temples/Gurdwara’s who have hosted and fundraised for ‘curry kitchens’ feeding the homeless and those struggling to feed their families.

4 - Bookshelf

Full of books representing authors, academics and radicals of Bradford…

  • The Brontë sisters
  • Mick Manning, artist and creator of children’s books.
  • David Hockney – artist
  • JB Priestley – author and playwright
  • Tree of Life Book – representing the Tree of Life Synagogue in Bradford. The Synagogue was in need of dire repair and, thanks to the local Muslim community, money was raised to complete the repairs. The true spirit of Bradford’s interfaith community.
  • Alfred Fowler – Astronomer who discover sunspots.
  • Nima Poovaya-Smith – developed the Transcultural Galleries at Cartwright Hall “one of the most significant collections of contemporary art in the UK by artists from south Asian, African and Caribbean heritages”.
  • Ron Wing – leading pharmacist who launched Ibuprofen and was instrumental in providing new treatments for epilepsy.
  • Iain Morris – local Bradford artist from Saltaire.
  • William Rothenstein – Painter
  • Nudrat Afza – Photographer
  • Clio Barnard – Director
  • Saad Qureshi – Sculptor
  • Robert Swindells – children’s and young adult author.
  • Andrea Dunbar – Playwright

5 - Globe

  • Reflecting the Afro-Caribbean communities of Bradford.
  • Peru in South America – Titus Salt built specially-designed ‘vertical’ mill – today’s Salts Mill – that could take in untreated raw alpaca Peruvian wool and, in one place, take it through all the myriad processes needed to turn it into finished cloth of the highest quality.

6 - Candles

To represent the light festivals of Deepavali and Hanukkah.

7 - Blossoming Flowers

Representing Florence Moser, who established the City Guild of Help in the town, a form of organised help for the poor and distressed of Bradford. Florence also ran an establishment called The Nest for mothers to leave their babies and young children for the day.

8 - Peace Doves

Representing The Department of Peace Studies at Bradford…

  • It was the first British university to establish a department of Peace Studies in 1973, which is currently the world’s largest university centre for the study of peace and conflict. The division has a reputation as a centre of excellence in peace research, international relations, security studies, conflict resolution and development and peace studies.
  • University of Bradford Library also houses the Commonweal Collection: “The Commonweal Collection is an independent specialist library concerned with issues relating to non-violent social change. It contains over 11,000 books and pamphlets, 150 current journals and a variety of videos and educational materials on peace and disarmament, environmentalism and the green movement, nonviolent philosophy and practice, human rights, development and regional issues, anti-racism, identity issues, social and economic alternatives, creative education, spiritual experience and analysis of world problems.”

9 - Cricket Bat & Ball, Football and Rugby Ball

  • Representing the Cricketer Adil Rachid who was part of the England squad that won the 2019 Cricket World Cup.
  • Bradford Bulls Rugby Club, who have won five Challenge Cups, six league championshipsand three World Club Challenges.
  • Bradford City Football Club – FA Cup winners 1911

10 - Little Boy

Little boy playing with an aeroplane to represent Barbara Jane Harrison, a British flight attendant and one of four women to have been awarded the George Cross for heroism after the plane she was on crashed.

According to witnesses, after the escape chute had been burnt away Harrison continued to force passengers to safety by pushing them out the door, even as “flames and smoke were licking around her face”.  She then seemed to be preparing to jump but instead turned back inside; there was another explosion and she was not seen alive again.

She was the only woman awarded the medal for gallantry in peacetime.

11 - Hijabi with Camera

  • Richard J. Appleton, a camera manufacturer and film maker, Appleton devised a tri-partite apparatus which he called the Cieroscope, combining the functions of camera, printer and projector.
  • In June 2009 Bradford became the world’s first UNESCO City of Film and became part of the Creative Cities Network since then. The city has a long history of producing both films and the technology that produces moving film.
  • The Cottingley Fairies appear in a series of five photographs taken by Elsie Wright and Frances Griffiths, two young cousins who lived in Cottingley

12 - Flora & Fauna

Framing the whole piece are plants and flowers found locally to Bradford, as well as flowers and plants of herbs and spices used in the cuisine of minority communities in Bradford e.g. South-East Asia, Arabia and the Caribbean.

13 - Bikes Cycling Over The Dales

Representing Le Tour de Yorkshire and Yvonne McGregor – a female English former professional cyclist from Wibsey. She was made an MBE, for services to cycling.

14 - Hewenden Viaduct

One of the highest viaducts in Britain, it has been recognised as a Grade II listed structure. The route became of strategic importance for through goods traffic, particularly in connection with the region’s extensive textile industry.

15 - Holly

In the woman’s hair, to represent the Christian faith.

16 - Okay Aicha

A poster of the artist who designed the mural and a poster showing the date of May, the month the artist’s Grandfather, Dr. George Alexandre Bell, was born.

Dr. Bell was the Chief Medical Officer of Bradford District and, in the 1960s, headed the pioneering Children’s Immigration Clinic which saw up to 12,000 children a year. His many years living in India meant that he could speak with the parents and children, reassuring them and welcoming them to Bradford.

17 - Sleeping Cat

All those cats you find sitting on walls in and in the windows of Bradford terraces and back-to-backs.

17 - Rumi's ``The Guest House``

Rumi’s The Guest House, our CEO’s favourite poem:

“In an era when mental health challenges are more understood, I feel like this poem helps reframe people’s mindset towards challenge. I always say Impact Hub is a space which hosts and welcomes people, and a great way to frame our space is as a 21st century guest house”