Boris Johnson welcomes London's Chinese New Year celebrations
The Mayor of London Boris Johnson has welcomed this Sunday's Chinese New Year celebrations, which are taking place in Trafalgar Square and Chinatown and mark the start of the Year of the Horse.
The annual event is one of the biggest Chinese New Year celebrations outside of Asia and large crowds are expected for a lively and colourful day out. Trafalgar Square will host the traditional dotting the eyes ceremony, as well as the spectacular Flying Dragon and Lion Dance by the Chen Brothers. The stage show will include performers from the UK and China, including Cultures of China Festival of Spring, Hong Kong band SIU2, Nanjing Little Red Flower Art Troupe and Mary Jess, the British singer who won Chinese X Factor. There will be plenty to see and do in and around Chinatown, including a parade led by the Lucky Money God in Charing Cross Road, plus lots of opportunities to sample regional Chinese cooking at the plethora of restaurants in the area.
The Chinese New Year celebrations in London are organised by the London Chinatown Chinese Association (LCCA) and supported by the Mayor of London and Westminster City Council.
The Mayor of London Boris Johnson said: 'London will be the best place in Europe to celebrate the Year of the Horse. The horse is an appropriate symbol for what makes our city tick and prosper. It is a powerful yet humble creature, associated with hard work and steadfastness, attributes that London and its population shares and qualities that are vital for our city's future success and prosperity. I had the great honour of hosting a trade mission to China last year and events like the annual New Year celebrations help to underpin the longstanding friendship between our two countries. Kung Hei Fat Choi! Xin Nian Kuai Le!’
C. T. Tang OBE, President of the London Chinatown Chinese Association said: 'With the participation of key attractions, including Chinatown, the celebration in London will be fantastic. Every year, hundreds of thousands of Londoners and visitors descend upon Westminster and the West End, to wish each other "Kung Hei Fat Choi" (or "Happy New Year"). It is symbolic of London's truly cosmopolitan culture, and something to be very proud of.'
The Deputy Mayor of London Victoria Borwick will take part in the opening ceremony and address the crowds from the main stage in Trafalgar Square. The family friendly event is free and takes place on Thursday 2 February from 10am to 6pm.
The Mayor's Chinese New Year message can be found by clicking on the following link: http://bit.ly/1d9RMbN