Diwali on the Square 2022: Trafalgar Square festival timings, line-up and more

Celebration time: Diwali on the Square is an annual festival in the capital  (PA)
Celebration time: Diwali on the Square is an annual festival in the capital (PA)

Diwali, the festival of lights, returns to London this weekend for its annual celebration in the capital.

The Hindu, Jain and Sikh communities will come together for a day of music, dancing, food and more, organised by the Mayor of London in collaboration with the Diwali In London organisation.

Tickets are free, and the line-up is packed. Here’s all you need to know.

When is Diwali on the Square 2022?

The celebrations kick off at 1pm on Sunday October 9, running until 7pm that evening — a couple of weeks earlier than Diwali itself, which doesn’t begin until later in the month. The festival will take over Trafalgar Square in central London.

What’s happening on the main stage?

The entertainment will burst into action with more than 200 colourfully dressed dancers, before the public are invited to join in with Garba dancing. It’ll be followed by a variety of performances from the Hindu, Sikh and Jain communities. The full line-up is yet to be announced, but you can find an overview of the day’s happenings below:

  • 1pm - Opening dance sequence

  • 1.25pm - Public Garba dancing

  • 2pm - Spiritual messages from Diwali in London Organisations

  • 2.15pm - Opening ceremony

  • 2.45pm - Community performances

  • 4pm - Group song - public participation

  • 4.15pm - Community performances

  • 6pm - Aarti ritual of worship in which light is offered to one or more deities, Bhajan a call and response song and Kirtan a devotional song

  • 6.25pm - Lighting moment across the square


What kind of food will be there?

There will be 12 food vendors dishing up their delicious wares on the day. The majority of the food will be inspired by South Asian cuisine — such as Indian street food spots Dabeli Hut and Gully Wrapz — with some bites from farther afield, such as Churros Garcia and Jamaica Cold-Pressed Juices. The full line-up is below.

  • Churros Garcia

  • Dabeli Hut Indian Street Food

  • Delhi Chef

  • Gully Wrapz

  • Jamaica Cold-Pressed Juices

  • Mr. Bombay

  • Oh Babu

  • Rajbhog Catering

  • RockIT

  • Shayona

  • Spice Shack

  • The Street Food

What else is going on?

A number of retail, charity and community organisations will also be there on the day, from Maryam Luong face painting to Sahaja Yoga sessions. Here’s the full rundown:

  • Action Village India

  • Jain and Hindu Organ Donation Alliance

  • Krishna My Friend

  • Mahiz Mehndi

  • Maryam Luong face painting

  • Metropolitan Police Hindu Association

  • Sahaja Yoga

  • South Asian Health Action