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Hundreds gather to celebrate Diwali in Newbury

Tickets for event at racecourse sold out in just half an hour

Dan Cooper

Reporter:

Dan Cooper

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01635 886632

Hundreds gather to celebrate Diwali in Newbury

HUNDREDS of people gathered to dance, sing and eat to celebrate Diwali at Newbury Racecourse on Saturday.

Diwali – the Hindu festival of lights – takes place every autumn.

The word Diwali comes from the Sanskrit word deepavali, meaning ‘rows of lighted lamps’ and signifies the victory of light over darkness.

Mega Diwali 2016 featured lamp lighting, cultural and Bollywood dance performances and music, followed by a four-course Indian buffet dinner and Bollywood disco.

The West Berkshire Indian Society, a voluntary community organisation that aims to keep the Indian community of West Berkshire in touch with their cultural heritage, organised the event for the eighth year running.

Fahiman Saujani, on behalf of the society, said: “Once again, the response was incredible and it was a record-breaking year.

“All tickets sold out in 30 minutes, which we couldn’t believe.

“The problem we have now is that we can’t find a venue big enough to meet demand.

“The racecourse can hold up to 600 people, but we had almost 300 people on the waiting list this year.

“It was a fantastic night, everyone enjoyed themselves.”

Guests included Newbury MP Richard Benyon and Newbury mayor Julian Swift-Hook.

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