Celebrating Chinese New Year Together in Southampton 2017: Concluding Remarks

Dear all, 

The Chinese Association of Southampton (CAS) has successfully completed a series of 5 Chinese New Year (CNY) celebrations spanning over 5 weekends at Southampton. A full cycle in a Chinese calendar consists of 60 years, which are traditionally represented by five elements and twelve zodiac animal signs. The first day of the CNY in 2017 falls on Saturday 28/01/2017, which marks the beginning of the Fire Rooster year. We were awarded the Celebrate England grant worth £10000 in September 2016 from the Big Lottery Fund for our Celebrating Chinese New Year Together in Southampton 2017 project. The project has many objectives, including the following: 

  1. to allow thousands of people from Southampton and the surrounding areas to enjoy the festival and celebrate it together;  
  2. to bring the young and old generations together, for jointly contributing to the success of the event while promoting mutual understanding of the two; 
  3. to allow various racial groups to work together and to understand the culture and tradition of each other;
  4. to promote the image of Southampton.

This is an ambitious project that requires a lot of commitments from the Chinese Association as well as supports from various local communities and organizations. The committee members and ordinary members of CAS have worked tirelessly since October 2016 to make this project successful. We believe that we have achieved all our objectives in this project. Our five celebrations include lion dance, dragon dance, Kungfu display; traditional Chinese dance, music and song; Asian dance and music; Western music and song; Chinese opera; Chinese cultural workshops and foods. We also have a range of exhibitions from 16/01/17 to 10/02/17 at Southampton Solent University, Andrews Concourse.


More specifically, our 5 CNY celebrations kicked start on Saturday 14/01/2017 at Southampton Guildhall Square, which was opened by the Sheriff of Southampton Cllr Les Harris [photos]. The second celebration was also at the Guildhall Square on Saturday 21/01/2017 [photos]. The third celebration was during the second day of the Chinese New Year on 29/01/2017 at West Quay, which was opened by the Mayor of Southampton Cllr Cathie McEwing [photos]. The fourth CNY celebration was at the Spark building of Southampton Solent University on 04/02/2017, which was opened by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor of Solent University Prof Mike Wilkinson [photos]. The last CNY celebration concluded on the 15th day of the CNY, which is also the Chinese Valentine Day, on Saturday 11/02/2017 at Southampton Guildhall Square, which was opened by the Southampton Superintendent Alison Heydari [photos]. More than ten thousand people have enjoyed our 5 celebrations; both young and older generations have participated in our events; various racial groups including the British and Asian groups have performed in our events; and we have worked together to promote the image of Southampton.


I would like to thank the following people and organizations for their contributions in our project: 

  1. I would like to thank all CAS committee members, especially the Vice-Chairman Mr Andy Lai, the Secretary General Mr William Ng and the Treasurer Mr Michael Ip, for their commitments and contributions in making this project a success. 
  2. I would also like to thank all of our CAS volunteers, some of whom are over 60 years old but are still so committed to help us building the two marquees since 7am during our three events at the Guildhall Square. Special thanks to Mrs Cora Edwards, Ms Yulian Xie, Mrs Doris Ng for managing the sales. Thanks also Mrs Cora Edwards for coordinating the games in the marquee.
  3. We are also fortunate to have the support from the Southampton University Confucius Institute (SUCI) as a co-organizer in terms of providing various Chinese Cultural workshops throughout the 5 celebrations, as well as providing some professional performances on our 3rd celebrations on 29/01/2017 at West Quay. We thank the directors of SUCI, Dr Ying Zheng and Dr Fang Zhou. 
  4. We also like to thank Prof Minghua Zhao the Director of the China Centre (Maritime) and Ms Jo Nesbitt the Director of the International Development of Solent University for their supports during our event at Solent University on 04/02/2017.  
  5. Special thanks to Southampton City Council, West Quay and Solent University for letting us to have our celebrations at the Guildhall Square, West Quay focal point and the Spark Building of Solent University, respectively.  
  6. We are also indebted to all our sponsors, especially the Big Lottery Fund, 游記 Yau Brothers & Company Limited, 蜀香居 Lime Bar, 上海灘 Shanghai Bay, 蘇記超市 Sukee Market, 唐城 Gourmet Kitchen, 聚寶軒 88 Chinese Restaurant, Fusion Noodle Bar, 隨便果 Share Plum and 川國演義 Szechuen Kitchen.
  7. We also appreciate our supporters from every corner of the society, especially the TriExforces for sending over Mr Samuel Reddy as our security officer at our 3 events at Guildhall Square and the And Guide Magazine for giving us a discount of our adversticement. Special thanks to Daily Echo for giving us discounted advertisement as well as for providing various coverage of our events.
  8. We also appreciate participations from various groups and organizations in our celebrations. More specifically, we thank 武壇武術舘 Wutan Martial Arts School for providing dragon dances and kungfu displays at our 5 events, 忠信龍獅團 Waterside Lion Dance Club for performing Lion dances at the first three of our events, UK Shaolin Temple for giving us Shaolin kungfu performance at our 3 events at the Guildhall Square, the Chinese Association Taichi group for their group Taichi performance, Nottingham Can Nga Court Cantonese Opera Group for their Contonese Opera performance, Art Asia for their Bollywood dances, Unity 101 for their songs, Denyzen for their band, Dr Min Gong, Ms Yusha Liu, Dr Frances Xu and Ms Chen Lu for their contributions to the Mandarin comedy about Rooster and finally Mrs Winnie Tang, Mr Billy Cheung and Mrs Lora Stubbs for their Cantonese comedy on Rooster.
  9. We also like to thank individual performers inluding Shaun Shears for his singing, Dr Min Gong for his songs, Ms Rong Yan for her songs, Mr Michael Tao and Ms Leqi Song from the Chinese School for their piano performances, Ms Zi Wang for her Erhu performance and Mr Yixuan Tong for his violin performance.
  10. We would also like to thank Mr Michael Yau and Mr Jack Law for dressing up as the God of Wealth, Mr Billy Cheung for dressing up as a Panda and Ms Jenny for dressing up as a rooster. 
  11. We are grateful to Mr Albert Choi (Chairman of the Portsmouth Chinese Association), Mr Tie Feng Sun (Head of Guangdong Federation of Literary & Art Circles), Ms Li Wei (President of the UK China International Friendship Exchange Center, and of the UK Far Eastern Arts), Mr Xiao Xuen Chen (Chairman of the Chinese Chamber of Commerce in UK) and Ms Yu Ling Du (China Business News in UK), for providing professional dancers and performers at our CNY celebration event at Solent University on 04/02/2017. Special thanks also to the dance groups from Portsmouth, Bournemouth and Dorset, especially to their leader Ms Michelle Zhang, for their performance at our last event on 11/2/2017 at Southampton Guildhall Square.
  12. We also like to thank Southampton University Chinese Scholar and Student Association (CSSA) and the Malaysian Student Association (MSA) for providing some performances for us. We also thank the Chinese Arts Southampton for celebrating the CNY with us together at West Quay on 29/01/2017.
  13. We thank all of our emcees Ms Yusha Liu, Mr Yu Liao, Ms Xue Cheng, Ms Jiang and Mr Andy Lai, for making our five celebrations interesting.
  14. Special thanks to our photographers Mr George Ping and Dr Shida Zhong for helping us to take so many nice photos.
  15. I would also like to extend my appreciation to all previous committee members of the Chinese Association, who have contributed to building up the association since 1999. More explicitly, I would like to thank our previous chairpersons: Mr Joe Hon, Mr Andy Lai, Dr Ping Hua, Mrs Elly Wong and Dr Jack Cheung.

This event has helped the Chinese Association to develop deeper relationship with various organizations and individuals. We have also managed to form new relationship with new partners and supporters. By the virtue of collaboration, we can become stronger and be successful together. The Chinese Association of Southampton invites everyone to work closely with us and to participate in our events. Let us work together to pass on the rich Chinese heritage and cultures to our next generation, as well as to promote mutual understanding between the local Chinese community and all other local communities in the UK.

I wish you all a happy Valentine Day and I also wish that I could still do a Taichi performance for the Chinese Association in the next Fire Rooster year!


Yours Faithfully,
Dr Michael Ng
Chairman of the Chinese Association of Southampton