Notting Hill Carnival under threat – what can be done
What will it take to establish the Notting Hill Carnival as a protected cultural festival? Every year it seems, an attempt is made at undermining its status.
An event of this magnitude is bound to have intrinsic issues. Yet, before being the largest street party in London, it is first and foremost a very important cultural event to the Caribbean community living in London. It fosters art, couture, craft, music and culture. And for this reason primarily, it must be preserved.
Last year, a BBC documentary, The Met: policing London, drew an unflattering picture of the carnival, whilst concluding that it was a safe event in which crime hadn’t happened for some time. This year, following a survey of the residents of Kensington & Chelsea conducted by Victoria Borwick MP, it is proposed to confine the carnival to the Wormwood Scrub park and restrict it to one day.
A petition requesting to protect the Carnival by proposing its inclusion to the UNESCO’s Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity list is currently active. The initiative may not immediately instigate change, but it will show to its detractors the importance of the Carnival to the Caribbean community living in London.