Diwali 2012 celebrations in the UK: Fireworks, Bollywood, traditional food

India News Bulletin Desk

Diwali, the festival of lights is one of the biggest highlights of the year in India. As Indian cities celebrate Diwali today, November 13, 2012, the UK Indian community too is looking to recreate the festive magic across the UK with lanterns, fireworks display, Bollywood song-and-dance and traditional Indian feasts.

This year's Diwali marks the beginning of the Hindu Year 2069, according to the Hindu Council of Birmingham. Several councils in the UK including those in London, Birmingham, Manchester, Leicester, Manchester, Nottingham, Sheffield are holding events to mark the beginning of Diwali and to unite the Asian and Indian communities.

Diwali 2013 is on Sunday, November 03, 2013. Read how the festival of lights is celebrated this year across the UK

Cultural events, Bollywood-themed entertainment and traditional food are some of the main highlights of the Diwali celebrations in the UK. Here are some of the Diwali 2012 events in the UK.

Diwali at BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, Neasden, London

Diwali 2012 at BAPS Swaminarayan temple, Neasden, London
Diwali 2012 at BAPS Swaminarayan temple, Neasden, London
Image: BAPS Swaminarayan Temple press site

The BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir is pledging to hold the largest Diwali and Hindu New Year celebrations in the country this year. The festival of lights and colours will be brought in on the Diwali day - Tuesday - with a Chopda Pujan between 6pm and 7.15pm at the temple's Haveli Assembly Hall. There will also be a fireworks display at the Swaminarayan School Grounds between 8.30pm and 9pm.  

The temple authorities have also promised hot snacks from 5pm at the venue. Read our review of pure vegetarian - Shayona restaurant at the temple grounds if you are in a mood for some authentic Indian food with your family. 

Diwali 2012 in London -- Trafalgar Square -- October 28, 2012:

Diwali 2012 celebrations in the UK
Image: Wikimedia Commons (Flickr: Anand)

The annual Diwali on Square sees the historic place transformed with magical light displays, fireworks display, floating lanterns, food stalls, music, dance and storytelling. London Indians were there to witness the magic!

Diwali celebrations in Birmingham

The Birmingham Diwali 2012 celebrations, organised by the Hindu Council of Birmingham, will take place on Sunday, November 18, 2012 between 2pm and 6pm at the New Bingley Hall complete with lights, Bollywood song and dance and fireworks display.

The venue will be “transformed into a vibrant and colourful arena” featuring a stage area featuring artists performing traditional dances, Bollywood songs, Bhangra etc., the council has said. 

The event will also feature nationally and internationally renowned artists from the Indian music and dance fields.

In addition, there will be a Hindu History exhibition area, Vedic arts Centre and Hindu Philosophy workshops as well as children’s entertainment zone.

Visitors can treat themselves with arts, crafts, toys, books and traditional Indian food at the stalls. As part of the tradition, there will be Fireworks display to be enjoyed by all, but children in particular.

As part of the tradition, there will be fireworks display at the end.

Manchester Diwali 2012 event
Manchester Diwali 2012 event
Image: Indian Association, Manchester

Manchester Diwali 2012 celebrations

The Indian Association in Manchester held a Dashehra – Diwali Mela on Sunday, October 28, 2012 between 2.30pm at 8.30pm at Platt Fields Park Manchester. The event’s other organisers include the Manchester City Council and the Arts Council of England.

The event was aimed at celebrating India’s two big festivals – Dashehra and Diwali – together.

It included trademark traditional celebrations including a Diwali lantern procession, Bhangra, Bollywood music, firecrackers and youth competitions. Bollywood Brass Band and singer Rafaqat Ali Khan will be the star performers.

The lantern procession included a parade of colourful and beautiful lanterns made by local children. It will feature a Giant Lotus lantern crafted by NutKhut events group. 

Diwali Celebration in Leicester

Diwali Switch On - Sunday 4th November
Diwali Day - Tuesday 13th November

There will be fireworks display and live cultural entertainment on stage as the festival of light marks the start of the Hindu New Year on Belgrave Road.

Also in Leicester, the Curve theatre is holding a one-night variety concert on Saturday, November 17 to celebrate Diwali. including a special performance by Signature dance group. Signature was founded by British bhangra duo Suleman Mirza and Madhu Singh famous for their Michael Jackson inspired dance.

UK Indians unite for a good cause with Diwali Banquet 2012

The Diwali Banquet will return for a third year on Sunday, November 18 at the Cinnamon Kitchen. The banquet -- hosted by Action Against Hunger, the humanitarian organisation committed to saving the lives of malnourished children -- aims to raise more than £30,000.

The gala dinner will bring together UK's top Indian chefs including Vivek Singh and Abdul Yaseen of the Cinnamon Club and Kitchen; Sriram Aylur of Michelin starred Quilon; Sameer Taneja, head chef at Mayfair restaurant Benares; as well as food writer and broadcaster Anjum Anand. It will also include last year's Masterchef winner Shelina Permalloo, a Mauritian who promises to bring a Mauritius twist to the delicious Indian menu.  

But that is not all! London restaurants are also offering set menus around Diwali season. and the wishes to UK Indians poured in from all quarters. "Wishing everyone a happy Diwali," said Labour MP Yvette Cooper on Twitter wishing the Indian communities here.  

If you are celebrating Diwali in the UK and would like us to include your event's highlights on this page, please write to us at .

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