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Information and webquests on La Tomatina, Notting Hill Carnival, Raksha Bandhan and the Olympic Games.

August festivals

  • Festivals: Olympic Games

    Type: Reference material

    The first Olympic Games took place in ancient Greece and was said to have been held in 776 BC. The object of the Games was to develop benchmarks of human creativity and excellence. Over the centuries, the Games highlighted extraordinary achievements and soon became the stage for noble competition and the education of sports. The sports which formed part of the Games were linked to ancient Greek myths. The Olympic Games were banned in 393 AD by the Emperor Theodosius for being 'too pagan'.

  • Raksha Bandhan

    Type: Reference material

    This is a sentimental Hindu custom within the family marking the love and affection between brothers and sisters, celebrated mostly in India. It comes from an ancient story referring to a battle between the gods and the demons. The King of the Gods, Indra, was unhappy with the battles. His wife, Sachi took a piece of thread and blessed it with sacred verses, known as mantras, for protection against harm and evil. She tied the thread around the wrist of Indra who went on to defeat his ...

  • Festivals: Notting Hill Carnival

    Type: Reference material

    During the 1950s, living conditions, the lack of work opportunities and racism affected many of the local communities. There were widespread racial attacks in 1958 and so the following year, a group of West Indian locals organized a Caribbean-style carnival through the streets of London. The first Notting Hill Carnival actually took place inside St Pancras Town Hall.

  • Festivals: La Tomatina

    Type: Reference material

    La Tomatina is the highlight of the festival on the last Wednesday of the month. Locals and tourists gather in the town during the morning whilst shopkeepers cover the fronts of their shops with sheets of plastic. Meanwhile, lorries carrying 125,000 kilograms of ripe tomatoes drive into the town. At 11am, a siren can be heard, then for nearly two hours everyone throws squashed tomatoes at each other. Another siren can be heard and that calls for the fight to stop.

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