Birmingham Diwali Extravaganza

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Soho Road Hosted A Lavish Celebration To Honour The Festival of Light

A lavish Diwali celebration took place on Soho Road, Birmingham with families attending in their masses. Food stalls, dancing and musical performances were present to help honour the Festival of Light.

Diwali is an ancient Hindu festival held every year in autumn, celebrating the triumph of light over darkness. It traditionally centres around the epic tale of Ramayana and observance to Lakshmi, the Hindu goddess of wealth and prosperity.

In the UK calendar it normally falls around mid-October and mid-November. People celebrating tend to clean their homes and offices, wear their best clothes and exchanges sweets. Fireworks are traditionally set off and families gather to celebrate.

The event is part of Soho Road’s BID (Business Improvement District), started in 2013 which aims to improve the image, business interest and appeal of Soho Rd. Plans include improving the overall view of Soho Road, reducing crime by local policing and CCTV and organising events and seasonal festivities. The BID is now in the final stages of a big community event for this year’s Diwali festival. The BID is home to 560 predominantly independent businesses with an estimated local population of 250,000.

BID manager Craig Bucky said, “We are very excited about running our first community event. It’s been a lot of hard work and determination and you’ll get to see a great celebration that the community can be proud of.”

BID chairman Dipak Patel added, “The long- term strategy is to make Soho Road an exciting place to work and live.”

Birmingham City Council and the Hindu Council of Birmingham will be collaborating to stage Diwali celebrations on Sunday, November 16, from 2pm to 7pm at New Bingley Hall in Hockley Circus.

A spokesman said: “The hall will be transformed into a vibrant and colourful arena featuring a stage area where local artists will be presenting entertainment in the form of traditional dances, Bollywood songs, and bhangra.

“To keep the children entertained there will be a dedicated kids’ zone with face painting, cartoon shows, mask making, games, competitions and a music and dance workshop.

“There will be plenty of stalls selling arts and crafts, toys and there will be fireworks display to be enjoyed by all.”

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