Children's parade to kick off the Mayor's Diwali celebrations in Trafalgar Square

Tuesday 23rd September 2014 10:45 EDT

Local school children will lead a parade on Sunday 12 October to launch the Mayor of London's Diwali Festival in Trafalgar Square. Leaving from Hungerford Bridge on the Southbank, the children's parade will be a colourful procession promoting a message of hope and happiness on its way to the square.

Londoners from all communities, as well as visitors to the capital, are invited to attend the free celebration, which features a colourful line-up of music and dance, delicious food and drink, plus activities for children to enjoy.

The annual event is being organised to mark the 'Festival of Lights', which is observed in India and many other countries around the world by Hindus, Sikhs and Jains. It is being staged by the Mayor of London in association with the Diwali in London committee, with support from headline sponsor Lebara, tourism partner the Indian State of Uttar Pradesh and media partner Zee TV.

An entertaining afternoon of family fun will kick off with traditional Garba dancing in the middle of the square, offering everyone the chance to join in. On the Main Stage a variety of live acts will perform, ranging from professional performers to local community musicians and dancers. There will also be a fashion show of Indian inspired clothing coordinated by Asian Bride Magazine. Children can take part in a range of activities that will teach them about the history of Diwali and Indiaâ•˙s links to World War I.

Revellers will be able to have an Ayurvedic massage, try on a free sari, get a new henna tattoo, find out about Uttar Pradesh, learn top health tips, or simply enjoy this yearâ•˙s illuminating light display. Throughout the day a range of stalls will sell a variety of tasty vegetarian food and non-alcoholic drinks, while shoppers can check out the Fashion Emporium and Diwali Street Bazaar.

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said: 'London owes a great deal of its success to the many and varied communities that add to the dynamism and spirit of life in the city, reflected in celebrations like our Diwali festival. It promotes powerful messages of peace and mutual respect that should resonate with Londoners, as well as holding huge significance for Hindus, Sikhs and Jains. I wish everyone celebrating in London and beyond a happy and prosperous Diwali.'

Event: Diwali Festival, Sunday 12 October 2014, 2pm – 8pm, Trafalgar Square, London, Entry- Free

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Brighton's award winning restaurant to host Diwali

Indian Summer, Brighton's award winning restaurant will host Diwali on Sunday 2 November to benefit the Curry Tree project, with a percentage of proceeds being donated to the Curry Tree charitable project.

There will be a sitar player from 7pm, with annual Diwali quiz with prizes, vivid rangoli patterned paintings, beautifully dressed staff and a special Diwali menu alongside the usual Indian Summer a la carte offerings. The Diwali menu comprises a trio of traditional street snacks as starters with a Royal indian Summer Thali main course followed by a Trio of Desserts showcasing Indian sweetmeats and ice cream.

The annual festivities have become something of an institution at the Brighton restaurant and the evening usually sells out well in advance.

Indian Summer is one of four restaurants chosen to represent Brighton in this year’s Curry Capital of Britain Awards alongside Chilli Pickle, Bombay and Ashoka.

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