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Influential Sikh women showcased in ‘inspiring’ Bosworth exhibition

A group of Sikh women have opened an exhibition, showcasing some of the most influential women from their faith.

Members of the Bosworth Sikh Women’s Group put together the exhibition, which opened on Saturday (April 20) at the Bosworth Battlefield Heritage Centre.

Leicester Time: Influential Sikh women showcased in 'inspiring' Bosworth exhibition
Picture: Provided by Surinder Kaur

In collaboration with Leicestershire County Council, the women wanted to shine a light on the achievements of women of the Sikh faith throughout history.

They include Princess Sophia Duleep Singh, who was a prominent suffragette in the United Kingdom, and Mata Khivi, who was the wife of the second Sikh guru Angad, best known for establishing the Sikh tradition of langar.

Speaking about the importance of the project, Surinder Kaur, from the Bosworth Sikh Women’s Project, said: “We wanted to promote our Sikh community because we do so much for charity, yet still there are a lot of people that don’t know about us.

“We decided to do the project about women because there are always a lot of projects about men but not about women. We thought this would be unique and something different.

“In the Sikh faith, there have been many inspiring and powerful women and when we were doing the research we were inspired. The women in the group – we wanted to be like them,” she added.

Leicester Time: Influential Sikh women showcased in 'inspiring' Bosworth exhibition
Picture: Provided by Surinder Kaur

Surinder hopes that people will learn from the 50 women featured in the exhibition, who span the 15th Century right through to the present day. 

“We hope that all of us could learn from them and try to live our lives in grace like they did,” she told the Leicester Times.

“We’re very proud to be part of this project. It’s a most remarkable exhibition which will promote good interfaith relations and also inspire young people to achieve great things in life.

“Eventually the exhibition is going around to schools, so that the younger generations can learn about our faith, our history and the contribution of the Sikh community.”

The exhibition, entitled ‘Sikh Herstories’ will be open until October. It was opened on Saturday by Kevin Feltham, chairman of Leicestershire County Council, Kevin Feltham and John Chatfeild-Roberts, High Sheriff of Leicestershire.

Leicester Time: Influential Sikh women showcased in 'inspiring' Bosworth exhibition

“The small temporary exhibition gallery offers a great opportunity for visitors to learn about local history and to show that English heritage is much broader than people realise,” said a spokesman for Leicestershire County Council.

“Much is known about the powerful women of the Wars of the Roses, and this exhibition explores their medieval peers in Punjab; the paths they forged for generations of Sikh women around the world.

“Discover the stories of remarkable resilience, courage, and service throughout history. Find out more about women who have changed lives in this unique co-curated exhibition.”