India was declared independent from English rule in 1947. However, a large number of Indians can be found in the United Kingdom today as well. As a matter of fact, many of them have gone on to become incredibly successful. Among the Indian population in UK, there is a high percentage of Sikhs, especially in the cities of Birmingham and the English capital, London. As a result, Baisakhi celebrations in United Kingdom have become incredibly popular, and are observed every year by not just the Sikh community, but a fair portion of other Indian communities and locals as well.
Organized by Birmingham's Council of Sikh Gurdwaras, Baisakhi celebrations in United Kingdom do not get any bigger than this. Held annually, the celebrations are open to anyone and everyone, regardless of which cultural or religious background you belong to. The celebrations mainly take place in Handsworth Park, with a children's play area, bandstand stage, arts, crafts, and exhibitions, along with a ton of Sikh cultural activities.
There are Darbar and Langar areas for worship and food respectively. In the Langar area, food is prepared by volunteers from numerous Gurdwaras in the West Midlands region. Both areas are kept open to all. Processions are an important part of Baisakhi celebrations in United Kingdom, as they are back in India. Birmingham's Annual Baisakhi Celebrations feature two processions; one starting from Baba Sang Gurdwara, and the other from Ramgarhia Sikh Temple.
Baisakhi celebrations in United Kingdom just would not be complete if the English capital London did not play host to any festivities. But fortunately, London's annual celebrations rank among the biggest Baisakhi celebrations in United Kingdom. Celebrated mainly at Trafalgar Square, Baisakhi celebrations in London feature huge attendances and a lot of cultural and musical activities. The 2014 version of the Trafalgar Square festival featured crowds in excess of 30,000 people.
Similar to other Baisakhi celebrations, the food on offer is strictly vegetarian and the celebrations are open for absolutely anyone. However, smoking and drinking are not tolerated at all.