Sarfraz Manzoor to deliver inaugural lecture

Mon 25 March, 2024
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It will be 50 years to the day, from when Sarfraz Manzoor arrived in Luton鈥檚 Bury Park from Pakistan to when he steps up to give his first lecture at the 新澳门六合彩开奖结果, an institution he was appointed Chancellor of last summer.

It has felt, says the Chancellor, 鈥渓ike a completely impossible journey to have made.鈥

At the free-to-attend lecture at the 新澳门六合彩开奖结果鈥檚 Luton campus 鈥 open to the public, as well as staff and students of the 新澳门六合彩开奖结果 鈥 Sarfraz will talk about his life growing up in the town, illustrated by photos of him and the town. He鈥檒l discuss why he had to leave Luton and why he鈥檚 now its biggest fan.

The lecture will also be streamed live.

Register for your free ticket:

'My Luton story: how I came, why I left and why I'm (sort of) back'

Thursday 16 May, 6pm to 7pm


Sarfraz 鈥 who was born in Pakistan and grew up in Luton 鈥 has seen critical acclaim for his writing which has often reflected on identity, belonging and the challenges and opportunities of multiculturalism. He gained international recognition when his memoir 'Greetings from Bury Park鈥, which described his childhood growing up in Luton in a British Pakistani family, was adapted into the 2019 feature film 鈥Blinded by the Light鈥.

At his inaugural lecture, the Chancellor will share his bitter-sweet recollections of growing up in the town in the 1980s and detail why he鈥檚 back and championing Luton.

The town has a 鈥渞esilience and a don鈥檛-count-the-underdog-out spirit鈥, Sarfraz said in an interview with the Guardian in 2023. 鈥淲hen I was growing up, I was writing Luton off. Now I feel like it鈥檚 the next big thing.鈥

An exhibition in Wardown Park will also mark 50 years since the Chancellor arrived in Luton. In collaboration with the Culture Trust, 鈥樷櫶齣s a special exhibition that will show the development of Luton and includes several personal objects contributed by the Chancellor, including his mum鈥檚 Singer sewing machine.

He said: 鈥淚 have been reflecting on the journey of my life and of my home town. It is this story, the story of Luton that I want to tell.鈥

A Q&A session, chaired by the 新澳门六合彩开奖结果鈥檚 Vice Chancellor, Professor Rebecca Bunting, will follow the lecture. After the event concludes, there will be complimentary drinks and light refreshments, as well as the opportunity for guests to meet with Sarfraz.


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