Vaisakhi festival in Trafalgar Square
Vaisakhi is the Sikh New Year Festival, the holiest time in the Sikh calendar. The actual Vaisakhi day is 13 April but this year the major London celebration is happening in Trafalgar Square, this Sunday 29 April.
Vaisakhi celebrates the day in 1699 when Guru Gobind Singh Ji bound the Sikhs to a strict code of conduct with unshorn hair, beard and turban and gave the Sikhs a distinct identity. Vaisakhi involves continuous reading of the Sikh Scripture, the Guru Granth Sahib Ji, over a period of three days followed by the recitation of sacred hymns, and ends with a final prayer for the good and well-being of the whole of humanity, and the serving of sacramental food.
The Trafalgar Square event runs from 11.30am-5pm and features a morning programme of hymns performed by groups from London’s Sikh temples. That’s followed by classical music and Dhol drummers, live music, traditional dancing, guest artists and DJs, interspersed with speeches. Vaisakhi in Trafalgar Square is free to attend and everyone is welcome.