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Thousands turn out for Vaisakhi celebrations

Vaisakhi celebrations watched by crowds in Birmingham Credit:

Organisers of a special Vaisakhi celebration held in Birmingham city centre over the weekend say around 15,000 people from all communities came to watch and take part in festivities.

Victoria Square hosted the city's big Vaisakhi celebration event, the first time a religious event of this size was held there. It was hosted by Walsall-based charity Midland Langar Seva Society (MLSS), who feed hundreds of people in need every night across the region, in accordance with the Sikh system of a free kitchen called Langar.

Organisers say many attending told them they hope it will become an annual event for Birmingham city centre.

"It was a really great day for all. We hope that people learned something about our faith. It is a blessing to be able to serve our community like this".

– Midland Langar Sewa Society

"Events such as this are an excellent way to open up dialogue between different communities..the general public got to be part of a celebration which is most dear to Sikhs. Learning about each other we can appreciate different cultures, strengthening unity within our society.”

– Jagmeet Singh, Sikh educational charity Everythings 13

Click here for more coverage of Vaisakhi parades in the Midlands.


Vaisakhi celebrations taking place in Wolverhampton

Thousands celebrating the Sikh festival Credit: ITV News Central

Wolverhampton's Vaisakhi celebrations will take place today in West Park.

The festival celebrates the founding of the Sikh faith more than 500 years ago.

The annual cultural event has been organised by the Council of Sikh Gurdwaras in Wolverhampton together with the Asian community and will include speeches by religious leaders.

There will also be a fun fair, Bhangra displays and Asian musicians performing live on stage.

"Fantastic turnout" for Leicester's Vaisakhi parade

A spokesperson for the Leicestershire Sikh Alliance has praised the "fantastic turnout" at today's parade to mark the Sikh festival of Vaisakhi.

People lining the streets of Leicester for today's Vaisakhi parade Credit: Leicestershire Sikh Alliance

Amandeep Rai said of today's celebrations:

"The turnout at today's Nagar Kirtan is fantastic, the atmosphere, the colour and the joyous spirit is inspirational. It's also good to see various dignitaries such as Jon Ashworth MP and Assistant City Mayor Rory Palmer in attendance."

The festival celebrates the founding of the Sikh faith more than 500 hundred years ago Credit: Leicestershire Sikh Alliance
Members of the Leicester Sikh Alliance today Credit: Leicestershire Sikh Alliance


Vaisakhi celebrations in Birmingham and Leicester

Procession in Wolverhampton Credit: ITV News Central

Birmingham's Vaisakhi celebrations will take place today in Handsworth Park. The festival celebrates the founding of the Sikh faith more than 500 hundred years ago.

Two processions will set off from Gurdwaras (Sikh temples) in the Jewellery Quarter and Sandwell at 10:30, heading to the park for the afternoon's celebrations.

Five Sikhs in full ceremonial dress will lead the processions carrying the Guru Granth Sahib, the Holy Scriptures of Revelation.

In Leicester the parade will begin at 10:30 and end at 15:00, moving through the city to East Park Road.

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