London, the biggest cultural city in the world

To mark the end of “London Calling Week” on the BBC World Service, teamed up and simulcast LIVE with four radio stations in London, Toronto, Sydney and New York…and asking which of these is the most successful multicultural city.

Having listened to the whole show about which is the most multicultural city (London, Sydney, Toronto or New York), all these cities sound great. They all portrayed themselves as welcoming. But London stood out as the richest. It has a cultural history running for centuries from the Normans and beyond. Its architecture speaks for moments of glories and tragedies. The other cities just followed, many of which took their authentic shapes just at the beginning of the 20th century. In London, you can travel through different periods. There is Westminster, the birthplace of tolerant democracy. In that, the British were the first implicitly to combine Republicanism and Monarchy. They kept the hereditary system of kings and lords while they empowered their elected Parliament and the Prime Minister. British traditions and culture are a fascination for the comers; especially the Europeans whose countries abolished Monarchy and it remained just a part of their history or objects of museums.

London was welcoming to the new comers, especially from Asia and Africa. They thrived in it while sticking to their culture, especially the Asians. There are no distinctly racial areas as it is the case in New York. British culture is proudly enriched with the cultures of immigrants, especially Asia and the Caribbean Islands. The tolerance is visible as extreme right wing ideology has no popularity in London.

One advantage of London is that it is relatively near other multicultural cities in Europe like Paris and Rome. From it you can have a tour of the cities and come back to London the cradle of tolerant multiculturalism. For me, if I settle in London I will need just a 5 hour (cheap) flight to get to my city Marrakesh at any time as there are more than 100 weekly flights between the two cities.

Settling in London is an opportunity to be relatively in the centre of the world. Britain has been a reference to time around the world through GMT. Its clock is still ticking showing how multiculturalism and native cultures are going through time.

Listen to a part of the show.

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Listen to the shorter version of the show

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