News / Europe

London Set for Huge Chinese New Year Celebrations

London Set For Huge Chinese New Year Celebrationsi
X
February 06, 2013 10:04 PM
The Chinese community in Britain -- the longest established in Europe -- is building up towards its celebrations for Chinese New Year. Henry Ridgwell visited London's Chinatown to see the preparations -- and to discover what the year of the snake has in store.
Henry Ridgwell
— The Chinese community in Britain - the longest established in Europe - is building up towards big celebrations in the coming days for the Chinese New Year.

Sunday, February 10 marks the Chinese New Year, and in the heart of London’s Chinatown, the lion dancers are perfecting their moves as drummers practice their beats.

Up to 400,000 visitors are expected to descend on this corner of Soho in central London to enjoy the parade, fireworks and of course, the food.  Organizers say London hosts the biggest Chinese New Year festival in Europe.  

Festival director Lawrence Cheng says it will be a breathtaking blaze of color.

“We’ve got two different troupes from China, one from Chengdu, one from Guangdong," he said. "So they’re from different parts of China and the audience will have the opportunity, can experience different aspects of the Chinese arts.”

The parade of dancers will weave through the crowds, stopping at restaurants to wish the owners good luck.

2013 is the Year of the Snake in the Chinese calendar - or to be precise, this year it’s the water snake. 

Suzanne Harper, a consultant in the Chinese philosophy of Feng Shui, says it marks an auspicious year.

“This happens once every 60 years," said Harper.  "It favors women, very much so.  It’s a year for going for your heart’s desire, that’s really important.  It may be travel, it may be romantic, it may be a change of career, it may be a new baby.  Whatever it is, the advice is ‘go for it’.”

Some of the young Chinese visitors to Chinatown have big expectations for the year ahead.

“To have good study, and have a healthy life for my family members,” said a visitor.

“Yeah, find a good job,” said another.

There will be festivities in Chinese communities across the world.  So it’s time to get out and celebrate.

Goodbye to the Year of the Dragon, and welcome to the Year of the Snake.

You May Like

Video On the Scene: In Gaza, Darkness Brings Dread and Death

Palestinians fear nighttime raids, many feel abandoned by outside world, VOA's Scott Bobb reports More

African Small Farmers Could Be Key to Ending Food Insecurity

Experts say providing access to microloans, crop insurance, better storage facilities, irrigation, road systems and market information could enable greater production More

University of Michigan Wins Solar Car Race

Squad guided its student-designed solar-powered vehicle to fifth consecutive time victory in eight-day bi-annual American Solar Challenge More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spati
X
Reasey Poch
July 28, 2014 7:18 PM
China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spat

China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video ESA Spacecraft to Land on a Comet

After a long flight through deep space, a European Space Agency probe is finally approaching its target -- a comet millions of kilometers away from earth. Scientists say the mission may lead to some startling discoveries about the origins of the water on earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Young Africans Arrive in US for Leadership Program

President Barack Obama's Young African Leadership Initiative has brought hundreds of young Africans to the United States for a six-week program aimed at building their knowledge and skills in fields such as public administration and business. Out of the 50,000 young Africans who applied for the program, just one percent was accepted. VOA's Laurel Bowman caught up with some of those who made the cut and has this report.
Video

Video In Honduras, Amnesty Rumors Fuel US Migration Surges

False rumors in Central America are fueling the current surge of undocumented young people being apprehended at the U.S. border. The inaccurate claims suggest the U.S. will give amnesty to young migrants from the region. As VOA's Brian Padden reports from Honduras, these rumors trace back to President Obama's 2012 executive order to halt deportations for some young undocumented immigrants already living in the United States.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid