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Welcome to Cambridge City of Sanctuary

It has to be said: these are tough times.  Hatred, xenophobia and intolerance seem to be on the rise.  The only way to change things is to get personally involved – right now.  Join a group, lobby your MP and councillors, ask businesses, shops, the media, your neighbours, your friends, everybody, to welcome refugees, asylum-seekers, and people of all nationalities, ethnicities, cultures and religions.

We are committed to building a culture of hospitality and welcome.  Let’s work together build a tolerant, forward-looking, open, welcoming, warm, compassionate city and country.

How Can I Help?

We have a page full of resources to help you to help people seeking sanctuary!  It’s here.

About Us

Cambridge: gravity, the neutron, the double-helix, fudge shops, punts, tourists and enormous skies.  We also have an active and passionate group of people dedicated to helping those fleeing persecution and seeking sanctuary in the UK.

Cambridge is known throughout the world as a centre of learning and enlightenment, and as an intellectual and technological powerhouse. Our aim is to empower this amazing community to use its resources to help refugees.  We have an active Faiths group and a  Schools Of Sanctuary group that is developing links with other education projects in Europe and the Middle East.  Our volunteers with tech skills have working closely with Help Refugees to bring technology to the volunteers working in the refugee camps in Calais and Greece.

We work closely with other groups:

The Cambridge Convoy Refugee Action Group organise regular convoys which travel to France to help cook food, chop and bag firewood and help with the sorting and distribution of aid. The Cambridge Refugee Resettlement Campaign group work together with the City Council and County Council to help with the resettlement of refugees in Cambridge.

There is always more to do.  If you’d like to be part of this amazing community get in touch – we’d love to work with you.

A Report On Asylum Seekers & Refugees In Cambridge 2016

Cambridge Ethnic Community Forum was commissioned by Cambridge City Council to conduct a piece of research on asylum seekers and refugees currently residing in Cambridge. This was also done on behalf of Cambridge City of Sanctuary. CECF, through its Refugee Service, provides welfare advice and practical help to asylum seekers and refugees in  Cambridge.

City of Sanctuary is a grassroots, national movement of local people and community groups working to make their cities a place of welcome and safety for people seeking sanctuary from war and persecution. Cambridge has a well established tradition of sanctuary. From Basque children fleeing the Spanish civil war, Jewish Kindertransport, Vietnamese, Bosnian and Chilean communities, through to more recently Syrian refugees.  To view and download the full pdf go here.

The Refugee’s Gift


‘The Refugeeā€™s Gift’ was commissioned by the Refugee Council from the photographer Bill Knight; one of the images was acquired by the National Portrait Gallery.

It presents portraits of people who have come to this country, with a brief text describing their lives, what they brought with them and the contributions they have made – to science, the arts, business, education.

They include Bob Hepple and Victor de Vaal.

Link to the ‘Refugee’s Gift’.