Updated January 11, 2013
Dancing dragons, unicorns and lions, firecrackers and fireworks displays, martial arts demonstrations and all kinds of Chinese nibbles. It must be Chinese New Year!
In 2013, cities and towns all over the UK welcome the Year of the Snake on or near February 10. Here's the rundown:
- Birmingham Sunday, February 10, loads of free events at The Arcadian in the Chinese Quarter from 12 noon until 5:30pm. Chinese Acrobats, singing, the Chinese Dragon Dance and Martial Arts. Hurst Street will be pedestrianised for the day. At least 30,000 people turn out for all the free events. Find more at the Birmingham Chinese New Year website.
- Chatham, Kent A small town but a big party. The third largest Chinese festival in the UK. In 2013, The Year of the Snake will be doubly welcomed. On Saturday, February 9, the Chatham High Street will be full of entertainers, dragon dancers, food and craft stalls For a Chinese New Year Preview. Then, on Sunday, February 17 the Medway Chinese New Year Parade sets along Chatham High Street at noon. A ticketed show at The Central Theatre Chatham rounds off the day at 2:30p.m.
- Liverpool Did you know that Liverpool's Chinese Arch is the largest outside of China? As always, the arch, on Nelson Street, is where the oldest Chinese community in Europe celebrates. Check the Chinese community website for dates and times -
- London, Trafalgar Square Traditionally, the London Chinatown Chinese Association celebrates on the first Sunday after Chinese New Year. That's February 10 in 2013, the Year of the Snake. Events kick off with a grand parade along the Strand, Charing Cross Road and Shaftsbury Avenue, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., followed by Trafalgar Square festivities from noon to 6 p.m. International artists, both Chinese and Western opera, and a firecracker demonstration over Leicestser Square that promises to be deafening.
- Manchester Puts on the biggest Chinese New Year celebrations in the north. in 2012, 65,000 people turned out to celebrate. In 2013, the main Chinese New Year Festivities, including Dragon and Lion Dancing by Master Chu, Kung Fu demonstrations, folk dance performances, fireworks and A spectacular Golden Dragon Parade. The parade heads from Manchester Town Hall to Chinatown at 12:30 on February 10. Before that, Albert Square will be full of market stalls, entertainment and good things to eat from 11 a.m.
- Newcastle-Gateshead is planning a giant celebration on February 10 in 2013, with special events and activities for the whole family. Parades, firecrackers, banquets and Chinese acrobats are all scheduled Between 11 a.m. and 5 p.m. from Stowell Street and around the city's Chinese arch. But Newcastle turns Chinese New Year into a many splendoured thing, with loads of events in the days and weeks leading up to the big day. Puppet and basket workshops, exhibitions and performances are all part of the fun. Find full details here
- Nottingham really goes to town for Chinese New Year, with events taking place at the Lakeside Arts Centre. It starts with the Notts Anaconda Dragon Boat team training on the lake on the morning of Sunday 10 February and culminates in a spectacular fireworks show later in the day. Check out the Brochure for the full schedule, that continues through most of the month.
- Sheffield Festive stalls, chinese food and a Chinese New Year Show, 5 to 9:p.m. at Sheffield City Hall, February 11, 2013. Admission charged.