Hackney Holi Colour Beach Festival

[Bryony Wharfe | Contributing Writer]

“I’m sorry!” says my boyfriend as I sit there, my eyes full of orange powder paint, which he had just blasted straight at my face. It hurt a tiny bit at the time, but after a while, I saw the funny side and soon everyone was throwing colour into each other’s faces.

Holi, also known as the festival of colours or the festival of sharing love, is a spring Hindu festival celebrated in Nepal and India. And this weekend, on a beautiful and crisp sunny day, it was brought to Hackney in East London at the historic Bath House.

Full of colour, dance, food stalls and a Tiki cocktail bar, the day started quite chill, with us sitting on a beached floor surrounded by people in white clothing. We stupidly decided to wear dark clothes but even in the midst of it all, the paint was still just as vibrant on us as it was on others. Towards the end, everyone was camouflaged with the colour splattered all over their bodies.

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People from all around London, the country, and even international students from Belgium came together to enjoy a fun-filled few hours throwing paint at strangers, dancing to a range of dazzling music, and getting drunk.

Hardly recognisable in the haze of paint was actor Robert Sheehan (Misfits) and girlfriend Sofia Boutella (Kingsman: The Secret Service) who were delightful to chat to and said goodbye as we left in the only way they could – by throwing paint in our faces.


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For £20 a ticket (which includes three free packets of colour), the event is definitely worth the investment. All I’d say is make sure you have extra money. You won’t be able to stop once you start throwing paint into the air and screaming as you do it!

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Images: Bryony Wharfe

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Hackney Holi Colour Beach Festival