‘Chinese New Year kicks off on February 16th and 2018 is the year of the dog (yay!). If you’re looking for a way to celebrate and take in the fun, look no further than these organised events around the UK…’
Liverpool’s Chinese population is very active which generally means that you’re guaranteed a good show if you head over to celebrate Chinese New Year in the city. Kicking off on Friday 16th, the city’s Chinatown will host a light show for the first of 3 nights. This will include displays on the beautiful ornate arch and the Back E. Over the weekend, Chinese and British students will be donning traditional dress and putting on displays of hip-hop themed dance. The main event over the weekend will be the giant dragon and lion parade, starting from 7pm on Saturday. The parade starts on Bold Street and snakes its way through the city, eventually finishing up at Liverpool One.
This northern city has one of the largest Chinese population in the UK and always does Chinese New Year in style. First of all, a pop up food festival will take place in St Anne’s Square over the weekend of 17th-18th and offers the delights of traditional dim sum and dumplings of all shapes and sizes. If you head on over to Manchester Art Gallery on Sunday 18th, you can catch Chinese musician, Henry Fung, playing a range of traditional music. There’s also a slew of child friendly activities on here, from art to story telling.
The main event of the weekend, the dragon parade, will take place on Sunday 18th. This kicks off with a martial arts display at noon. A parade then follows throughout the city. This is led by a massive and very colourful dragon, roaring its way through Albert Square and into Chinatown. The festivities will culminate in a rather large firework display, starting at 6pm on Sunday.
Not to be outdone by its northern counterparts, the English capital will also be playing host to a huge variety of events. These will primarily be based in the West End as London kicks off celebrations for The Year of The Dog. From 12pm on Saturday, Trafalgar Square will play host to dazzling displays of dancing, marital arts, hip hop acts. There will be plenty of food trucks on hand to satisfy your craving for dim sum. If you love your Chinese tea, there’s a rather cool workshop being held at the China Exchange. You can learn how to make your own blend and find out the healing properties of the ingredients. In your face, PG Tips. The main event is the dragon parade and, after this, a huge firework display in Trafalgar Square which will close out the weekend.
In the city’s rather gorgeous George Square, a mixture of traditional Chinese and Scottish events will kick off the Chinese New Year. This is designed to highlight the two cultures who live side by side in Scotland’s second city. Noise and colour are the main elements, with displays of dancing, martial arts, bagpipes (obviously…) and, most of all, the important Dragon and Lion dance. The festivities kick off at 12pm on Sunday 18th February.
Bangor, North Wales
Over in North Wales, we’re not ones to be left out of the celebrations. With Bangor University hosting so many Chinese students, it’s no surprise that the Welsh and Chinese residents celebrate each other’s cultures. The Pontio Cinema will be showing a range of films over the weekend and the foyer of the venue will also see live music. There will also be family friendly craft workshops, calligraphy lessons, the painting of opera masks, and a host of other activities. At noon on Sunday at Bangor’s Town Clock, main event of the Chinese New Year takes place: the dragon parade. This means an explosion of colour and sound from local children, as well as the Confucius Institute.
Newcastle Upon Tyne
Newcastle’s 2018 NY celebrations are brought to you by a very successful crowdfunding campaign. This might be the sweetest, most community-minded thing I’ve ever heard. Those donations will also bring you a scheduled parade, for the very first time, from the Monument at Old Eldon Square to Chinatown. Most noteworthy will be dancing, dragons, unicorns, lions, drums, lanterns and also traditional Chinese food. If we know anything about Tyneside it’s that they’re a friendly bunch who enjoy a good party. Tyneside’s celebrations promise to be a fantastic display of Chinese and English culture.
Where ever you decide to ring in Chinese New Year; have a good one.