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The University of Southampton
The India Centre for Inclusive Growth and Sustainable Development


Sardar Harnam Singh Roudh
Sardar Harnam Singh Roudh

Community champion, enterpreneur  

Sardar Harnam Singh Roudh’s contribution, prominence and respect in his chosen Southampton home led to his being called the “father” of the city’s Sikh community.

With just £3 in his pocket, Singh Roudh moved to England alone in 1951. All he had with him was a holdall of clothes.  Within a decade, this pioneer opened Southampton’s first Indian and West Indian Continental store.

But Singh Roudh will be best remembered for his work in making sure the Sikh community was not only recognised but thrived in a growing multi-cultural country.

It was he who led the founding of the Gurdwara Guru Teg Bahadur Sahib, the city’s first ethnic minority place of worship.  At this invaluable community resource, he served as its general secretary, president and a voluntary priest.

When he passed away, the local newspaper, the Daily Echo, described the event in January 1988 as “the biggest funeral Southampton has witnessed”. The service, said the paper, reflected “all the pomp and ceremony usually reserved for monarchs and civic leaders”.

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