Sunderland is gearing up to extend Gong Hei Fat Choy greetings, as preparations are underway to mark the festivities of the Chinese New Year.

In collaboration with Sunderland City Council and Ian Wong, proprietor of the renowned Asiana restaurant in the city, Sunderland BID has orchestrated a captivating lineup of events set to unfold in Sunniside Gardens on the 18th of February.

Visitors can enjoy traditional dragon and lion dancing along with dragon-making and mask-making workshops, calligraphy and paper-cutting activities.

There will be the opportunity to try the art of origami – paper folding – as well as a range of walkabout characters, music and dance performances and a range of food and drink stalls.

The event – which is free to attend – runs from 11am until 3pm and Sharon Appleby, Chief Executive of Sunderland BID, is hoping that lots of people will go along and enjoy the day.

“We’re delighted to be staging a really spectacular Chinese New Year celebration, with something for everyone,” she said.

“There’ll not only be a whole host of different activities for people to take part in but it is also a great opportunity to learn more about one of the world’s oldest cultures.”

Ian Wong echoed Sharon’s words.

“It’s fantastic to be able to bring Chinese New Year back to the city again on such a big scale and create a really memorable event in the heart of Sunniside,” he said.

The event has also been made possible by funding from the UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF) following a successful application made by the BID, which led to an award of £202,253.

The money is being used to deliver a range of initiatives in and around Sunniside with the aim of “building pride in place and a sense of a community.”

Funding has already been used to improve the look of the area, with the installation of festoon lighting and wrapping the trees in Sunniside Gardens in lights.

Further information on all activities is available at

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