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All tickets include a Gujurati Dinner, please arrive promptly to ensure you have time to enjoy!


We Are The Lions, Mr. Manager!’ is the remarkable story of Jayaben Desai the inspirational leader of the 1976-78 Grunwick Film Processing Factory Strike.

She was recently amongst the women who have had the biggest impact on women’s lives over the past 70 years as part of the Radio 4 Women’s Hour Power List.

She brought the issue of workplace exploitation and racism to the fore, challenged the perception of Asian women being inherently passive and docile, whilst having the measure of the most brutish and charmless of her managers, telling them:

“What you are running here is not a factory, it is a zoo. But in a zoo there are many types of animals. Some are monkeys who dance on your fingertips, others are lions who can bite your head off. We are the lions, Mr. Manager!”

She not only stood up for workers’ rights and against oppression with selfless dedication, but with her steadfast resolve, she turned the dispute into a national movement for human rights and dignity inspiring future generations.


New play based upon the Grunwick Strike and Jayaben Desai’s fight for Union recognition, freedom, equality & human dignity

A new play by Townsend Productions relives the extraordinary true story of the Grunwick Strike, a dispute that challenged the way women and immigrants are treated in the workplace.

On the 20th August 1976 a group of workers in a film processing factory in Willesden walked out in protest at their unfair working conditions, low pay and the 'bullying tactics' used by management.

Led by mostly East African Asian women, the Grunwick strike became one of the longest and most important industrial disputes in British history, and changed the way trade unions thought about race and new immigrant communities coming to Britain in the 1970s.

The women became known as the “strikers in saris” and their fight for fair treatment was supported by thousands of trade unionists and campaigners, as more than 20,000 people joined them at the picket lines on one of the mass pickets.

But the story of the Grunwick dispute is not just a story about ground-breaking solidarity. It is also the story of a remarkable woman, Jayaben Desai.

The four foot ten inches tall, mother-of-two defiantly led the first walk-out in protest against the humiliation she and other women employees felt at the Grunwick factory.

As she left, the manager shouted at Jayaben and her colleagues to “stop chattering like monkeys in a zoo", and Jayaben replied: "What you are running here is not a

factory, it is a zoo. But in a zoo there are many types of animals. Some are monkeys who dance on your finger-tips, others are lions who can bite your head off. We are the lions, Mr. Manager!”

Jayaben became the leader of the Grunwick Strike and not only stood up for workers’ rights with selfless dedication, but with her steadfast resolve, she turned the dispute into a national movement for human rights, inspiring future generations and challenging the way people perceived Asian women.

Now, Jayaben's story is being brought to life for the very first time by Townsend Theatre Productions seeking to relive the strikers' inspirational fight for freedom, equality and human dignity.

Written by Neil Gore, the play will tell the story of the Grunwick dispute through a mixture of stirring song, poetry, movement and dance, and the play will utilise Townsend Production's trademark cast of two characters playing multiple roles.

 “In our work we aim to focus on the lives and contributions of inspirational and vital figures from our social history, often forgotten, who campaigned vigorously to improve the quality of life for everyone. Jayaben Desai is one such figure. She tirelessly fought on behalf of immigrant workers against exploitative employment practice; fearlessly faced all the elements of establishment authority; alerted many in the trade union movement to the issues of vulnerability of immigrant workers; and highlighted the fight to maintain basic trade union rights. Her resolve and courage should be remembered and celebrated. Also, Grunwick raised many wide-ranging questions about trade unionism, rights in the workplace and dignity at work, themes that still resonate and are relevant today.”  Neil Gore

We Are The Lions Mr Manager is directed by Louise Townsend & Musical Director John Kirkpatrick and will feature in it’s cast Medhavi Patel and Neil Gore

We Are Lions, Mr Manager! is supported by Arts Council England and Unite the Union.

For more info visit www.townsendproductions.co.uk

Shree Kutchi Leva Patel Samaj Cardiff

Shree Kutchi Leva Patel Samaj Cardiff (Community Centre)
U.K. Registered Charity No. 513920.

We are Community Centre founded by the Leva-Patel Gujarati community. In the 60's and 70’s our community started to settle in Cardiff, just as in Africa they shared opportunities, jobs and 
housing organising activities like Prayer’s, Bhajan’s, Garba in school and church halls. 

As people started to prosper enough to buy their own family homes, instead of sharing a roof with many families, money was slowly raised to buy a dilapidated warehouse in the heart of Grangetown at a cost of £15000. Transforming the building required seemingly un-achievable amounts of funding and building work . 

Our members rallied visiting Samaj’s, temples and door-to-door collecting any charitable contributions they could receive. Our volunteer music group raised money by touring in Bristol, Bolton, Oldham, Blackburn and London. 

Once sufficient funds were raised our community joined hands, volunteering skills, time and sheer grit to transform the building into a modern community space that opened to the public on 11th November 1984.

In the 90’s we received National Lottery Funding to refurbish the building introducing a professional stage and PA, fit-for-purpose kitchen, disabled access and re-working upstairs into several activity rooms including.

Since then we have maintained the building and bought the freehold. Raising money through fund raising activities and donations from our members, the public and the temple. This year we modernised redecorating, fitting energy efficient LED lighting and installing WiFi throughout. 

The mission of the Samaj is to:
- Fortify our culture and tradition among the Cardiff Hindu Gujarati community
- Provide an education Centre for all
- Offer a home for all cultural and leisure activities for the community
- Operate as a charity movement to provide facilities to all regardless of age, infirmity, disablement or economic circumstance

Our Aim:
- To bring all Hindu's together in a humble of peaceful environment without the need for total integration or assimilation and to have respect for Hindu heritage
and their cultural values.
- The aims of the charity are reflected in its Mission Statement.
To enhance the quality of life through Dharma, Education, Culture, Social Events and Seva (Selfless Service) and bring these values forward to benefit society.

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