Diwali parade lights up Wembley

Thousands flocked to Wembley to watch Brent’s Diwali Parade - the largest of its kind outside India

The streets of Wembley glowed every colour of the rainbow as thousands of Hindus, Sikhs and Jains took part in Brent’s Diwali parade.

Known as the Hindu festival of lights, Diwali marks the return of Lord Rama to his kingdom after he defeated the demon King Ravana, signifying the triumph of good over evil, and is one of the most important events in the Hindu calendar.

Celebrants wore colourful costumes taken from the sacred texts, and lit small clay lamps known as diyas.

Maggie Raffee, headteacher of Alperton Community School, who along with about 150 of her students took part in the parade.

She said: “It was absolutely fantastic. Our students looked incredible dressed as flames, flowers, peacocks, huge tigers and elephants and swans.

“The streets were absolutely packed and there was a fantastic atmosphere with young people of many different backgrounds involved and a very diverse audience.

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“I am very proud that Alperton Community School is at the heart of such an important festival and parade in Wembley.”