It’s the 18th year that Barnsley is celebrating the Indian festival of light - Diwali, which is traditionally regarded as the beginning of the Indian New Year.
Due to the ongoing Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and the current restrictions, the event will not take place in its usual format. However, with the support from the Gujarat and Indian Welfare Association of Barnsley, the lights in the town centre will be lit up on Thursday 5 November and will remain on until the end of the month. However, we do encourage people not to gather in the town centre for this.
The Mayor of Barnsley, Cllr Caroline Makinson, will be joined by Mr and Mrs Patel, from the Gujarat and Indian Welfare Association of Barnsley, and Stephanie Peacock MP for Barnsley East in a video message to mark this occasion and continue the tradition of cracking a coconut. The hard shell of coconut symbolises ego and ignorance which is broken to give way to knowledge and purity.
Cllr Caroline Makinson said: “Diwali celebrations will no doubt be very different this year, with people being unable to meet with friends and families outside their household or support bubble. This, however, doesn’t mean that Diwali is cancelled. We are creating some online celebrations for people to enjoy and mark this happy and joyous occasion from the safety of their own homes.”
This year Diwali will be celebrated on Saturday 14 November. Please make sure you follow the latest government guidance and stay at home as much as possible.