Fireworks, lion, dragons and food entice huge crowds for Sunday festival
HUNDREDS of thousands of humans and quite a few Oxen are bound for Chinatown Sunday 1 February, to see in the Chinese New Year.
Last year's festivities were reckoned to be close to the 300,000 mark, the best attended outside the Celestial Kingdom itself.
So it's good-bye to the Rat and hello to the Ox. In Chinese mythology, the Ox, among other attributes, signifies prosperity through hard work, which might be handy for a recession.
Bringing young children to Chinatown for the New Year celebrations can be a bit of a slog, what with the crowds and the sudden appearances of noisy dragons.
People laden with offspring would probably do best to base themselves at Trafalgar Square, where space is at less of a premium than Leicester Square or Gerrard Street and its tributaries.
On the other hand, you get great fireworks on Leicester Square and the main lion dances are in Chinatown, so you pays your money and takes your choice, except that it's all free.
The main parade starts at the Strand at 12 noon, arrives at Trafalgar Square about an hour later and continues until 6pm.