The Mayor of Durham, Cllr Edward Bell, will be charged with catching the lucky lettuce as part of Durham’s traditional Chinese Lion Dance to welcome the Year of the Rooster.

The Mayor will be available for posed photos with the Lion and the Lettuce in the Market Place following the first Lion Dance of the afternoon, approximately 12.50pm.

The City of Durham will welcome the Chinese New Year of the Rooster with events throughout the city centre on Saturday, January 28th.

To drive away bad luck and bring a fresh start, the traditional Chinese Lion will dance its way through the city centre scattering lucky lettuce leaves.  The Mayor of Durham, Cllr Edward Bell, will face the Lion and catch the first lucky lettuce to ensure a good year ahead for Durham.

The Lion will dance in front of the Mayor and crowds in the Market Place at 12.30pm*.  Following this, the procession will move to the Prince Bishops Shopping Centre at 1.10pm*, Elvet Bridge at 1.35pm*, and Framwelgate Bridge at 2pm*, with a final performance in Walkergate outside Missoula at 2.30pm*.  Before the arrival of the Lion, there will be a Martial Arts warm up and demonstration in the Market Place from 12 noon.  This and the Lion Dance will be performed by Oceans Apart Kung Fu Club.

Colin Wilkes, Managing Director of Durham Markets and organiser of the city’s Chinese New Year celebrations, commented: “You won’t be able to miss the Lion Dance, it’s a noisy event, accompanied as it is by drums and cymbals as it makes its way through the city.  It’s an annual event which is enjoyed by all, particularly the children.  Come along, enjoy the spectacle and welcome in the Chinese Year of the Rooster!”

Drop-in Chinese New Year themed Arts and Crafts sessions will also be held in Clayport Library in Millennium Place from 10am to 4pm on Saturday, January 28th.  There will be a charge of £1 per child.

*Please note, timings are approximate and may be subject to change without notice.