Notting Hill Carnival is Europe’s largest street festival, attracting over a million people every August Bank Holiday weekend. Beginning on Saturday evening with Europe’s premier steel band competition, it moves on to a Children’s day on Sunday and the main parade on Monday. This historic event is bigger than ever, growing from small roots in the 1960’s to a huge celebration of Caribbean culture that welcomes visitors from around the world.
The roots of Notting Hill Carnival can be traced back to similar annual festivals held across the Caribbean. The spread of the West Indian Carnival came with the migration of West Indians, particularly Trinidadians, to Europe and North America. Not willing to lose their identity they formed cultural groups and societies that would, among other things, organize yearly Carnival celebrations to maintain a tradition that came out of slavery and the rebellion of West Indians against the slavers. The history of Carnival clearly demonstrates how, in adverse conditions, a cultural event became a vehicle for community self-help, a movement towards self-sufficiency, empowerment, participation and involvement.
Notting Hill Carnival is a platform that brings together the elements of music, MAS costumes and steel pan. It does so in a spirit of culture, community and tradition. The Notting Hill Carnival offers brands and organisations diverse opportunities to promote their values, products and services to millions of people in a way that no other European event or platform can offer.