In this time of increasing tension brought about by the recent European referendum, it is disheartening to read that the local area’s most powerful response to sectarianism – the Notting Hill Carnival – is under threat of displacement.
In response, Green Westway is proposing that the Notting Hill Carnival becomes recognised in the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity list in order to increase the scope for protecting this important London, British, and global celebration. Green Westway has previously written about enhancing the environmentally-friendliness of the event, but as a campaign centred on inclusive local sustainability – i.e. promoting environmental, economic, and social integrity – safeguarding the carnival’s future as a festival in the streets of Notting Hill rather than in a local park is important.
The carnival was born in local social movements from the burning ambers of hatred and racism. Over the years, its marriage of Caribbean culture to West London streets has turned this situation on its head and momentary carnival experiences have led to lasting social unity, which as recent days have shown us, should certainly not be taken for granted.
Its location in the streets is not accidental. As a social movement at heart, the revelry in Notting Hill’s streets represents normality being suspended and new behaviours emerging. Inhabiting the streets in this different way recreates space and enables people to think differently and challenge their realities. In this way the carnival has become a symbol of change and multiculturalism in the UK that deserves protection.
Pledge your support to establishing Notting Hill Carnival as the UK’s first UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity by signing this petition to be presented to local MP Victoria Borwick- https://www.change.org/p/victoria-borwick-mp-notting-hill-carnival-should-become-recognised-as-unesco-heritage?recruiter=66069807&utm_source=petitions_show_components_action_panel_wrapper&utm_medium=copylink
We hope that we she will raise this in parliamen, and at the same time we will start exploring our options with UNESCO.
Read more about UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage here: http://www.unesco.org/culture/ich/en/home
Find out more about carnival here: http://thenottinghillcarnival.com