This introductory chapter begins with a brief discussion of the significant influence of the Irish in post-war Britain. In the 20th century, the Irish were the single largest foreign-born population in Britain. They were largely accepted, and attracted less attention compared to migrants from the Caribbean, continental Europe, Africa, and South Asia, partly because they were less visibly different than other newcomers — they were white and spoke English; most were Roman Catholics; and majority viewed their stay in Britain as temporary and planned to go back when the Irish economy improved. The key issues addressed by the book are detailed. An overview of the succeeding chapters is presented.
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