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East Midlands Chamber News

Leicester leaders join forces to show they are #TogetherInHope during Covid-19 lockdown

Public leaders in Leicestershire have united for a celebration of community spirit across the county during Covid-19.

The University of Leicester’s Vice-Chancellor Professor Nishan Canagarajah, Leicester City Football Club CEO Susan Whelan and Bishop of Leicester Martyn Snow have launched the “Together in Hope” campaign this weekend.

Backed by a host of high-profile personalities and organisations including East Midlands Chamber, it will highlight messages of encouragement and acts of kindness for one another that have been springing up during the UK’s first local lockdown was imposed on Leicester at the end of June.

Using the hashtags #TogetherInHope and #WeAreLeicester, the coalition of leaders and personalities have invited members of the public, businesses and community groups with connections to the city and county to tell the world what they celebrate about Leicester and Leicestershire.

People have been encouraged to produce a piece of art, poetry, film or spoken word – other ideas include writing a letter, sharing a recipe, posing for a photograph, and highlighting community and charity work – with the Together in Hope branding, while telling the world about Leicester’s strengths and how they will continue moving forward together in hope.

Professor Nishan Canagarajah, President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Leicester, said: “Leicester is an incredible city. There is so much diversity and unity in one place. It has the world at your doorstep.

“I am proud of Leicester and it is one of the reasons why I want to champion this great initiative, Together in Hope, to ensure we come out of this lockdown stronger and more united.

“It’s more important now than ever to shine a light on what is great about our city. Together we can be a beacon of hope for others.”

Leicester City CEO Susan Whelan said: “Leicester is a truly special place, whose diverse and passionate community has been both the backdrop and the inspiration for some of the city’s finest achievements.

“As we’ve seen throughout this pandemic, it’s also a community that comes together to support each other when support is most needed, which gives me great confidence that we can overcome the current challenges and emerge from the lockdown stronger than ever before.”

The Rt Revd Martyn Snow, Bishop of Leicester, added: “We’re launching Together In Hope because we’ve been so encouraged by the way people have come together across Leicester and Leicestershire during the pandemic and lockdown.

“We want the world to know about this and we want to tell people that our diversity is our strength.

“We believe that this diversity and togetherness will enable us to emerge from this crisis with renewed hope for a society in which we care for one another and care for our planet.

“I’m delighted that so many partners have already come on board with this initiative and we hope you will join us and start sharing stories of Together In Hope.”

Organisations from the worlds of sport, education, business, charity, arts, community – as well as faith leaders and personalities – have agreed to support “Together in Hope” on social media.

High-profile individuals include ex-Leicester City and England footballer Gary Lineker, BBC cricket correspondent Jonathan Agnew, businesswoman and broadcaster Rosemary Conley, and Turi King, who is recognised for her work in discovering Richard III’s body and is professor of public engagement at the University of Leicester.

Shrinker UK has created a series of videos to promote the initiative, in the 15 most spoken languages in the city.

Personalities and organisations in Leicester supporting #TogetherInHope and #WeAreLeicester

Professor Nishan Canagarajah, President and Vice-Chancellor, University of Leicester

Susan Whelan, CEO, Leicester City Football Club

Rt Revd Martyn Snow, Bishop of Leicester

Rosemary Conley CBE, Businesswoman, author and broadcaster

Jonathan Agnew, BBC Cricket Correspondent

Gary Lineker OBE, BBC Sports Correspondent

Maggie Philbin, Tomorrow’s World

Simon Cole QPM, Chief Constable, Leicestershire Police

Rick Taylor, Chief Fire and Rescue Officer

Professor Robert Allison, President and Vice-Chancellor, Loughborough University

Professor Andy Collop, Interim Vice-Chancellor, De Montfort University

Geoff Rowe BEM, Festival Director, Big Difference Company

Scott Knowles, Chief Executive, East Midlands Chamber of Commerce

Flor Healy, Group Chief Executive, Samworth Brothers

Kevin Routledge, Chairman, Leicester Riders

Sean Jarvis, Chief Executive, Leicester Cricket Club

Andrea Pinchen, Chief Executive, Leicester Tigers

Verity Hancock, Principal, Leicester College

Dawn Whitemore, Principal, The SMB Group

Chas Bishop, Chief Executive, Leicester Space Centre

Karamjit Singh, Chair, University Hospitals of Leicester

Andy Williams, Chief executive of the NHS Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland CCGs

Chris Stafford, Chief Executive, Curve Theatre

Nikolai Foster, Artistic Director, Curve Theatre

Revd Mark Burleigh, Head of Chaplaincy and Bereavement Services, Leicester’s Hospitals

Suleman Nagdi, Spokesperson, Federation of Muslim Organisations

Resham Singh Sandhu, MBE, Leicestershire Interfaith Forum

Pradip Gajjar, President, ISKCON Leicester

Rt Revd Dr Guli Francis-Dehqani, Bishop of Loughborough

Jonathan Kerry, Chief Executive, Leicester Diocese

The Very Revd David Monteith, Dean of Leicester

Revd Jenny Impey, Minister, Leicester Trinity Methodist Circuit

Revd Novette Headley, Superintendent Minister, Leicester West Methodist Circuit

Dilwar Hussain, Chair, New Horizons in British Islam

Associate Professor David Bartram, Chair, Leicester Progressive Jewish Community

Jiten Anand, Director, Inspirate

Sean Carroll, Director, Inspirate

Bipin Anand, Director, ImageNova

Glynis Wright, President Leicestershire Law Society

Professor Turi King, Professor of Public Engagement, Leicester University

Revd Dr Tom Wilson, Director, St Philip’s Centre

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