Leeds-based housing association Unity Homes and Enterprise will hold its Annual General Meeting next Monday (19 September) at 4pm in the Executive Suite of Headingley Carnegie Stadium, with the media and public invited to attend. A buffet will be served immediately afterwards followed by an historic inter-faith T20 cricket match between Mount Cricket Club, a team of Muslim players from Batley, and St Peter’s XI, the Vatican’s official cricket team. Unity is co-sponsoring the game and admission is free. Lord Patel of Bradford - recently appointed personal adviser to the new Secretary-General of the Commonwealth, Baroness Scotland of Asthal – will attend the AGM and deliver a keynote address. Unity chief executive Ali Akbor said: “Unity was set up almost 30 years ago to address the housing needs of the black and minority ethnic communities in Leeds. We have significantly expanded our range of activities since then and now manage more than 1,200 properties for tenants from all communities and ethnic backgrounds. But, as our annual report entitled ‘Delivering Nationally, Delivering Locally’ vividly illustrates, we have never forgotten our roots.” Lord Patel added: “Unity and Yorkshire County Cricket Club are organisations that are committed to providing high quality services to the multi-cultural communities which they serve – both fundamentally believe in providing equality of access, experience and outcomes – whether through sport, housing or employment and education.” Unity Homes and Enterprise Unity Housing Association was formed in 1987 with the objective of building a strong, BME-led, community housing association to address the needs of black and minority ethnic communities in Leeds. The initial focus was on Chapeltown, but this has widened to other areas of the city including Harehills, Beeston, Holbeck and Chapel Allerton. In 2000 the association established a subsidiary company, Unity Enterprise, to support local entrepreneurial activity. Unity Employment Services was set-up in 2011 to support Unity tenants and their surrounding communities in accessing employment and training opportunities. Professor Lord Patel of Bradford OBE Born in Nairobi, Kenya, Kamlesh Patel moved to Bradford when he was one-year-old. He was educated at Belle Vue Boys Grammar School and Huddersfield Polytechnic where he attained a specialist qualification in Social Work. He was awarded the OBE in 1999 and was elevated to the House of Lords as a Crossbench peer in 2006. Lord Patel joined the Labour party as a senior adviser in 2009 and became a minister in the House of Lords a year later. He has served as chair of the Bradford Teaching Hospitals Foundation Trust and patron of 32 charities. In 2010 he authored the Patel Report, a review on treatment for drug abuse in prisons. Contact: For additional information or comment, please contact Barry White on Tel: 07787 514324 or email:

Ali Akbor, Unity Homes and Enterprise Chief Executive

Professor Lord Patel of Bradford, OBE

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