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Tea enjoys a special place in British culture and the industry has played a key role in building links between Britain, India, and Bangladesh. Behind Britain’s cup of choice is a fascinating story that is rarely told.
Over 500,000 British-Bangladeshis now live in Britain. Over 90% are of Sylheti origin, from a district in northern Bangladesh that was once part of Assam, the first tea growing region in British India. This exhibition reveals the extraordinary story of how the British love of tea led to Sylhetis first coming to Britain.
Tim Smith is a photographer and filmmaker based in Bradford. For over 35 years he has traveled widely, working with communities in Britain and overseas to explore stories of migration and identity. For this new exhibition, he has collaborated with British Bangladeshis in Oldham, Rochdale and other parts of Britain to explore the story of tea.
Photo: River of Tea: From Bengal to Britain © Tim Smith