Local MP for Uxbridge and South Ruislip, Boris Johnson welcomed the Ambassador of Poland, Arkady Rzegocki to Uxbridge Library to celebrate 100 years since Poland regained independence.
The Ambassador's visit also commemorated 250 years of diplomatic relations between Poland and the UK. To mark this, the Ambassador presented Polish language books to Uxbridge Library on behalf of the Polish Book Institute and Cultural Institute.
The guests joined local children from St Andrew’s Primary School for a craft workshop to make Polish flags, and toured a historical exhibition on the Polish airmen's contribution to victory in the Second World War.
The Polish constituted the second largest Allied contingent to serve in the Royal Air Force (RAF) behind the British. The Hillingdon Council exhibition explained the legacy of the Polish No.303 squadron based at RAF Northolt. It was the most successful Fighter Command unit in the Battle of Britain.
Cllr Ray Puddifoot, Leader Hillingdon Council said: "We are honoured and delighted that Poland's ambassador chose to join our festivities and donate books to Hillingdon Libraries. The Polish community in the UK has made a positive contribution for generations and it is a privilege to promote the best in Polish culture and national heritage to our residents."
Boris Johnson, MP for Uxbridge and South Ruislip, said: "Poland has stuck with us through thick and thin, never more so than the heroic pilots in the Battle of Britain and our debt is absolutely incalculable. I am deeply, deeply grateful to the Ambassador and the Polish people for all the solidarity they have shown, and continue to show - and we will reciprocate it for another 250 years."
The timing of the festival coincides with Polish Heritage Day, which is held annually on the first weekend following Polish Constitution Day on 3 May.
The Polish airmen exhibition continues at Uxbridge Library until Thursday 10 May.