The Chinese New Year 春节 in 2015 is the ‘Year of the Sheep’ begins February 19th.
Celebrate with one of the oldest established Chinese communities in the UK. Manchester’s China Town was established in the early 20th Century. A small community at first, the numbers grew in the 1940s and in 1948 the first Chinese restaurant in Manchester opened called the “Ping Hong”.
If you can contribute to telling the history of the Chinatown community in Manchester, email email@example.com.
The impressive Chinese arch in Manchester’s China Town represents the Ming Dynasty. The archway was completed in 1987. Adorned with dragons and phoenixes, the arch stands at 45 feet high and was the tallest in Europe until it was superseded by the Chinese Arch in Liverpool.
What happened in 2014’s New Year Celebrations.
2014, in the Chinese Zodiac, is the Year of the Horse, and the Chinese New Year was celebrated with many different events in Manchester’s China town. 2014’s celebrations included martial arts, traditional Chinese dance displays, the customary dragon (even longer this year than last year’s!), a dance parade and also art groups, great Oriental food and fireworks.
What do people do for 春节 Chinese New Year in China?
Many people clean their homes to welcome the Spring Festival. Red posters are put up on doors with poetic verses on. Chinese New Year 春节 pictures are placed on walls, and people decorate their homes with beautiful red lanterns. Chinese New Year 春节 is a time also to reunite with relatives and many people visit their families at this time of the year.
During the Spring Festival Eve, fireworks and firecrackers are lit to cast away any bad luck and to bring forth good luck. Children generally receive “lucky” money in red envelopes with gold lettering printed on. Chinese New Year’s 春节 Spring Festival festivities are also a time for people to wear their new clothes and to send Chinese New Year 春节 greetings to each other. Lively street activities include beating drums and striking gongs, dragon and lion dances.
The Spring Festival is a major national holiday in China. Government offices, schools, universities and many companies are closed during the period from the Spring Festival Eve to the seventh day of the first lunar month in the Chinese calendar. However, some enterprises such as banks often arrange for workers to be on shift duty. Public transport remains available during the Chinese New Year period.
Historical documents tell us that, on the day when Shun (one of ancient China’s mythological emperors) came to the throne over 4000 years ago, he led his ministers to worship both heaven and earth. From that date forwards in the Chinese calendar, this worship day was seen as the first day of the first lunar month. That is the basic origin of Chinese New Year and when China adopted the Gregorian calendar in 1911, Chinese New Year was then renamed the Spring Festival.
Officially Chinese New Year is celebrated on Chuyi (初一 /choo-ee/ the very first day of the new year, Chinese New Year’s Day) and Chuxi (除夕 /choo-sshee/ the last day of the previous year, Chinese New Year’s Eve).
Traditionally though celebrations can start much earlier than Chinese New Year’s Eve. Some people start to celebrate from three weeks before. The date is called Laba (腊八 /laa-baa/ the eighth day of the twelfth Chinese month), while more people celebrate from one week before — the 23rd of the twelfth month.
The red posters with poetic verses on it were initially a type of amulet, but now it simply means good fortune and joy. Various Chinese New Year 春节 symbols express different meanings. For example, an image of a fish symbolizes “having more than one needs every year”. A firecracker symbolizes “good luck in the coming year”. The festival lanterns symbolize “pursuing the bright and the beautiful”.
Always a great day for young and old. Please come and join the 2015 New Year’s celebration for the year of the horse in Manchester’s China town. Check out what’s coming up on our 春节 CNY news page.