SUMMER TIME | Rain fails to stop the spectacular Notting Hill Carnival kick-off
HOUSANDS of revellers braved the rain to kick off the Notting Hill Carnival in style – with a colourful street party.
Partygoers were up at the crack of dawn to throw paint, mud, chocolate and oil on each other while dancing.
Cop gets twerked by two girls at the Notting Hill Carnival
The traditional Jouvert Parade marks the start of the two-day celebration.
The annual carnival in west London is celebrating its 50th anniversary and huge crowds have turned out despite the miserable weather.
More than a million people are expected to attend during the two-day celebration, the highlight of which is tomorrow’s grand parade.
After this morning’s sunrise street party Children’s Day continued with a parade aimed at youngsters.
The Notting Hill Carnival is Europe’s biggest street party and the second largest carnival in the world, behind only Carnival in Rio de Janeiro.
Police officers with special skills for recognising the faces of offenders will be on hand in a crackdown on crime at the carnival.
The “super-recognisers” will be inside a CCTV control room seeking out both offenders committing crimes and anyone with bail conditions which ought to stop them from attending the event.
It is one of a number of measures the Met will be taking to ensure visitors from all over the country can stay safe and enjoy themselves during the carnival.
The force will also be trialling a facial recognition system to help identify wanted offenders, by using cameras which scan the faces of those passing by and flag up potential matches against a database of custody images.
London’s “threat level” has been set at “severe” for some time now and the police are urging all those planning to attend the carnival to remain vigilant and report anything suspicious.
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Over the last week, police have arrested 215 people they believe planned to use the carnival as a cover for committing crime or violence. More than 200 search warrants were also made.
Although the arrests were mostly for drugs-related offences, officers have also taken six firearms and 50 rounds of ammunition, as well as a number of knives and machetes from the streets.
Three motor vehicles and £30,000 were also seized.
Superintendent Robyn Williams said: “This weekend is the highlight of the year, not only for the Caribbean community, but also for many visitors from London and the rest of the country.
“The Met has worked hard to ensure that Carnival is a safe and enjoyable weekend for everyone who attends and I would ask all carnival-goers to enjoy this family event and make sure that you follow officers’ and stewards’ instructions.”
For everything you need to know if you’re heading to Notting Hill Carnival this weekend click here.