Carnival goers flock to Notting Hill
Update: The Notting Hill Carnival ended up drawing close to 850,000 people this year. More than 200 of them were arrested over the two-day festival.
NowPublic contributor LotusFlower also covered this festival. Please click here to read
Officers were given extra powers to stop and search potential criminals in a bid to crack down on violence that has marred the street festival in recent years.
Chief Insp Edwards added: "You would expect more arrests because we're searching more people. We want to stop the small minority from coming and spoiling it for everyone else."
Some 850,000 revellers packed the streets of west London over the weekend as masquerade floats entertained party-goers at the Notting Hill Carnival, Europe's biggest street festival.
More than 200 people were arrested for a variety of offences over the two-day festival on Sunday and Monday, including 19 for possessing an offensive weapon, though many were detained for drug and alcohol-related crimes.
"The number of arrests is up on last year, but that is predominantly because of proactive policing," said Chief Inspector Jo Edwards.
The vast majority of the festival, however, went off peacefully -- massive crowds danced and clapped in the streets to Caribbean music and steel drums, while colourful masquerade floats moved through Notting Hill, with several stalls selling Caribbean food a short walk away.
The festival was launched in 1959 by post-World War II immigrants from what were then Britain's Caribbean colonies, as a community act of defiance following ugly race riots the year before.
It was held in various parts of London before settling permanently in Notting Hill in 1964. The annual event is now the world's second-biggest carnival after Rio de Janeiro.
The Notting Hill carnival in London is the largest street festival in Europe. It celebrates the city's Carribean population. Send in your photos and video from Carnival!
Hundreds of thousands of revellers are expected to descend on the streets of west London for the final day of the Notting Hill Carnival.
The carnival, Europe's biggest street party, showcases Caribbean culture.
About 250,000 partied on the first day of the carnival on Sunday which saw children in colourful costumes parade through the three-mile route.
Tight security saw police arrest 98 people on the first day of festivities which was "higher than usual".