Notting Hill’s 50th anniversary carnival was it’s usual exciting, colourful, noisy, crowded self. The sun shone most of the time and the percussion bands had hordes dancing in rhythm. The best time is before the carnival begins, when everyone is tense with excitement, Notting Hill throwing a party for the rest of the world. This has taken a year to prepare. Glittering, feathery costumes hang on the railings, and there is no music, just excitement, chattering and the odd panicked shout if someone has lost a strap. One group dressed especially for this anniversary carnival were the amazing Jab Jab devils (pic top). The group spent ages patiently brushing on black paint (pic right) it took over an hour, to represent the times when Trinidadian slaves were sent into the sugar cane fields to extinguish fires and they came back covered in black soot. To satirise the slave owners, the Jab devils put pale eye lenses in. Wearing slave chains they leapt and wailed, high pitched and loud, through the streets. Jab is the French patois for devil, diable, and this group was really lively, seriously scary and completely hilarious, chasing people down the street and leaping around. Carnival, always a surprise.
Some more carnival moments: