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It has a collection of over 50,000 Chinese books available for loan and reference to local readers of Chinese; music cassettes, CDs, and video films for loan; community information and general enquiries; a national subscription service of Chinese books; and Chinese events organised from time to time.The library also hosted a photography exhibition in 2013 as part of the British Chinese Heritage project, with photographs and stories of Chinese workers.
Shen was the first person to catalogue the Chinese books in the Bodleian Library.
For a full biography see Chapter 2, The Chinese in Britain - A History of Visitors and Settlers by Barclay Price. The British East India Company which was importing popular Chinese commodities such as tea, ceramics and silks began employing Chinese seamen from the early 1880s.
Those who crewed ships to Britain had to spend time in London's dock area while waiting for a ship to return to China and so the Limehouse area became the site of the first Chinatown in Britain.
Since 2000, the emergence of Internet discussion sites produced by British Chinese young people has provided an important forum for many of them to grapple with questions concerning their identities, experiences, and status in Britain.
In several major cities there are Chinatowns, which have become tourist attractions where Chinese restaurants and businesses predominate, although in some cases relatively few Chinese people may live there.) are people of Chinese – particularly Han Chinese – ancestry who reside in the United Kingdom, constituting the second or third-largest group of overseas Chinese in Europe apart from the Chinese diaspora in France and the overseas Chinese community in Russia.