Carnival costumes
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Notting Hill Carnival starts on streets of West London

Hundreds of thousands of people braved afternoon rain showers to take to the streets of west London as the Notting Hill Carnival got under way.

Dancers in colourful costumes began parading along the three-and-a-half-mile route with floats and flotillas, partying to music from more than 40 independent sound systems.

The carnival, Europe's biggest street festival, is the climax of months of preparation.

BBC London's Greg Mckenzie reports.

  • 29 Aug 2010