THOUSANDS of people turned out yesterday to celebrate the Chinese New Year in the North East.
This year is the Year of the Snake and the streets in and around Newcastle’s Chinatown saw the annual street celebrations played out in all their splendid colour and sounds.
Attractions included the traditional lion and dragon dances, firecrackers, an exhibition of Chinese costumes, food and arts, and demonstrations of traditional Chinese arts and crafts.
Carol Bell, head of culture and major events at the NewcastleGateshead Initiative said: “Newcastle staged one of the largest Chinese New Year celebrations in the UK and there was an enviable line up of traditional Chinese entertainment.”
The celebrations began at noon in the city’s Bath Lane when the eye dotting ceremony – which awakens the new lion from his slumber to the sound of firecrackers – took place.
This was followed, at the ceremonial arch in Stowell Street, by traditional dragon, lion and unicorn dances.