Little Imogen honoured at Chinese New Year celebrations

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Residents in Castleford joined East Asian people the world over to celebrate the arrival of the Year of the Pig this week.

Chinese New Year events were planned across the area on Tuesday. The holiday is traditionally marked by family visits, special meals, fireworks, and gift-giving.

In Castleford, the New Eastern Court restaurant will host a new year event on Friday to raise funds for Imogen Holmes.

The two-year-old suffers from spastic quadriplegic cerebral palsy, which has left her unable to speak and with only limited use of her arms and legs.

She recently travelled to Panama to undergo specialist stem cell treatment, after a public fundraising campaign raised more than £20,000 to fund the trip.

The £35 ticketed event, where under-fives go free, will include a three-course banquet, entertainment from Britain’s Got Talent semi-finalist Craig Harper and a traditional lion dance.

Helen Lee, spokeswoman for the restaurant, said: “We are proud of our Chinese culture where eating in large groups celebrates health and happiness.

“We should all be happy to enjoy the wonderful evening ahead of us, sharing our happiness and making new friends.”

Chinese New Year celebrations were held across West Yorkshire, beginning with a Rhythm of Spring concert at Leeds Town Hall last month.

Fiona Kit, a committee member at the Leeds Chinese Community School, said that pupils would celebrate with “family time.”

Although many people in the county celebrated by visiting Chinese restaurants, traditional celebrations last for 15 days, and the concluding Lantern Festival will take place around the world on February 19.

Visit www.facebook.com/NewEasternCourt for more details on Friday’s event.