Magical Lantern Festival set for 2017 return

The Magical Lantern Festival is set to return to Chiswick House Gardens in the new year.

The event, taking place from 19 January to 26 February 2017, will feature over 50 light sculptures, Chinese arts, virtual reality, games, food, a funfair and a 600sqm ice rink.

Magical Lantern Festival celebrates the Chinese New Year, and in 2017 takes its theme from The Silk Road. Installations will include a 15-metre illuminated sculpture of the Houses of Parliament, a full-size replica of the ship that Chinese Admiral Zheng used on his trade explorations and a lantern adventure across Europe, Asia, Arabia, Egypt, Persia, India and Ancient China on the Silk Road.

More than 100,000 visitors came to the 2016 debut of the Magical Lantern Festival, including celebs Ant & Dec, Emma Bunton, Emilia Fox and Clare Balding.

Creators David Lee and Ian Xiang, both of Weli Creative­­, commented: “We were absolutely delighted to see London’s extremely enthusiastic response to this important Chinese tradition last year and we were keen to make it an annual event for the UK.”

Power supplier Midas will once again help Weli Creative put on the Magical Lantern Festival, providing 40,000 bulbs. Midas will also power the event’s tour through Leeds and Birmingham from 25 November to 2 January.

“It’s great to see venturesome events like these thriving out of the traditional season and it’s a pleasure to be involved,” said Midas’ managing director David Noble.