In pictures: Crowds of 60,000 make Hackney Carnival 2019 the biggest - and greenest - yet
- Credit: andy commons
Crowds of more than 60,000 gathered to celebrate the biggest – and greenest - carnival Hackney has ever seen.
Samba dancers and entertainers from 25 carnival groups wearing elaborate costumes filled the streets with colour as they paraded on Hackney Carnival's new route from Mare Street to Queensbridge Road ending in London Fields.
And PA systems on floats were powered by renewable vegetable oil generators which do not emit greenhouse gases.
Paracarnival performers dressed in green, waved banners reading "save the Amazon" in keeping with the carnival's 'sustainability' theme.
The carnival was the most eco-friendly yet. Measures to increase recycling and reduce waste included free water stations at eight locations to encourage people to bring reusable bottles to top up, and staffed waste facilities to boost recycling. Traders at the event were encouraged not to use plastic, and marketing and promotional materials for were produced with minimal plastic components.
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Peacocks, a lion, a cow and a huge pig were some of the incredible costumes on display.
As the groups danced past judges in Hackney Town Hall Square, there were some crowd favourites who received extra applause and big cheers, including local groups Jamboulay, GAHU Dramatics, Dimensions and Tropical Isles.
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A Carnival Village in Hackney Central boasted food stalls, children's areas and seven sound stages including the Faggamuffin Bloc Party in Bohemia Place - a sound system run and curated by queer people of colour. The line-up on the live stage ever included Jah Bunny, DJ Green Papi, local gospel choirs and a special performance from the king of African electronic music and rap, Ata Kak.
Pax Nindi, the founder of Global Carnival Centre artistic director of the carnival which is funded by Hackney Council and Arts Council England, said: "It's so exciting to see so many residents coming out to experience Hackney Carnival. The atmosphere is electric, the costumes just keep on getting better, and the colours are fantastic. It's an absolute joy."
Cllr Kam Adams, Speaker of Hackney said: "A huge congratulations to everyone involved in the biggest Hackney Carnival of all time. What an amazing atmosphere - a fitting celebration of the borough's diverse community."
Dancer Ken Hinds 60, said: "Hackney Carnival is a beautiful mix of different cultures, backgrounds and demographics expressing themselves all in their own unique way. It's a great celebration and I love being a part of it year after year."
Anna Nijie, who attended with her three children liked the family atmosphere. She said: "Our children love Disco Loco, it's great to see them having fun and enjoying the music in a safe environment."