Croydon’s bright and imaginative entry in the 2015 London New Year’s Day Parade gained a runner-up place and received a special award of £2,000 toward the Mayoral charities, Age UK and Macmillan Cancer.
Croydon’s interpretation of this year’s theme, London on the Move, saw 40 local people taking part, and was called We Are Croydon: Going Places.
In chilly temperatures, and costumes designed and built by Brit School students, young members of Aspara Arts – a Croydon-based arts and heritage organisation – and local charity Sangeetha of the UK showcased the borough to a live audience of hundreds of thousands, and a global TV audience of millions.
They were among 8,500 performers who had travelled to London from across the world to walk, march and dance the 2.2-mile route from The Ritz, in Piccadilly, to Parliament Square, for the 29th outing of the annual jamboree.
In addition to 20 musicians, 20 others helped out or wore costumes representing iconic Croydon buildings such as the Clocktower; aeroplanes representing the first international airport; a couple of trams; and a 10-foot high tree (with a face and more than 100 international flags) representing the borough’s greenness and the many cultures that call Croydon “home”.
The Mayor of Croydon, Councillor Manju Shahul-Hameed, said: “On behalf of the borough of Croydon I was delighted to support the 2015 London New Year’s Day Parade in our magnificent capital city.”
“Croydon participants – including the volunteers, talented artists and the community – did a great job in displaying and celebrating Croydon on the move.
“Their costumes, music and dance represented the ever-changing movement of our borough in terms of its transport, landscape and residents.
“Congratulations should go to the parade organisers, and best wishes to the thousands of performers from across the world, who participated. Everyone had a wonderful day and I wish them all the best for a very happy 2015.”