Photo by Debbie Castro

Hello, Welcome to the site

I’m Anna Kucewicz, or to some Ania Kucewicz – I guess it’s a symbol of my dual culture. I speak English like a native, understand British culture well, but sometimes I just know I’ll never fit the mould because at heart I’m very Polish.  This site isn’t about politics or religion, although I may touch on them a little, but about the culture we ‘Poles’ love so much but don’t always know so well.

Born in the UK to polish parents, my Dad was deported to Siberia as a child, arriving in the UK with the families of the II Polish Corps in 1947. My Mum grew up in Wilno, Krakow, Warsaw and Częstochowa , arriving here with her mother in 1958 to join her father. He had been deported to Gemany for forced labour from which he escaped and joined the II Polish Corps in Italy, before coming to the UK, not knowing if his wife and child were still alive.

My early memories were tinged with the unspoken trauma of war. A favourite bedtime story from my Babcia (Granny) was about her house burning down during the Russian/German front crossing Wilno in 1944.  I have survived Polish Saturday School, many Akademie (shows), and am active in harcerstwo (Polish scouting).  I’ve always been interested in history, have a degree in it and have carried out research on Poles in the UK and in Poland. Somehow, I have even managed to receive an MBE for my labours in Polish scouting.

More than anything I love my freedom! To hang out in cafes, read newspapers, explore my family history, try to understand Polish politics, visit exhibitions and the theatre, being outdoors and waking up under canvas. Since the age of 19 I’ve been to Poland every year. I’ve sailed out of Szczecin, canoed down its rivers, walked it’s mountains and the streets of many cities. Wife to an English husband and a Mum, I live in ‘God’s own country’ Yorkshire, though I have also lived and worked in London during my many years in communications and public relations.

I love all things beautiful. Cooking Polish food takes me back to my childhood and connects me with many friends with roots in Poland or who have arrived more recently.  I adore projects and this is one which I hope you will agree, links people of Polish heritage together. There’s something very special about having grown up with an identity that was on the whole, forged in the home.

Thank you for visiting this site and do comment on posts or write to me about any subjects you’d like to hear about.

Recent activities

  • Presentation about my Polish family research to the Michigan Genealogical Society 2022
  • “The journey south” talk at the Kresy Family World War II History Group Memorial Day 2023
  • 2 online film reels for 80th anniversary of the battle of Monte Cassino – ‘Ode to the fallen’ poem and the ‘Heroes of Monte Cassino’ 2024
  • “Roots of a mountain, roots of identity” talk and film presentation at “Welcoming Cultures” event part of “Migration Matters Festival 2024

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