Viking theme for Newcastle's New Year

NORSE mythology and Viking folklore will form part of New Year celebrations in the North-East tomorrow night. (Monday, December 31)

The highlight of Tyneside’s Winter Festival culminates with a free carnival on the streets of Newcastle from 5pm.

Hundreds of people are expected take part as the parade as it makes its way from Monument, up Northumberland Street to Newcastle Civic Centre for the traditional early evening firework display at 6pm.

Carol Bell, head of culture and major events at the Newcastle Gateshead Initiative, said: “We’re very proud to host one of the biggest New Year’s celebrations in the country here.

“Year on year we’ve seen the event grow to include hundreds of local community performers, arts groups and volunteers.

“Our long time collaborators, and producers of the Winter Carnival, Walk the Plank, have created another brilliant event for all the family to enjoy.”

The family-friendly event features Odin’s wolves prowling the streets with Thor and the Black Elves looking on.

The mythical World Serpent will slither through the streets, which legend has it, has grown so large it circles the World in its grasp.

Thor’s Hammers will add some percussive strength to proceedings and the Kingsmen’s fire dance will lead a flaming Viking Longship up Northumberland Street from 5.15pm.

The rhythms of the World Beaters’ Spark drummers will summon the carnival parade to Newcastle Civic Centre for the firework finale.

Mrs Bell said: “With so many people staying in town to celebrate the arrival of 2013, we wanted to extend some of the carnival celebrations. A short firework display will take place on the NewcastleGateshead quayside at midnight for those people enjoying New Year.”

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