Newly arrived Hong Kongers have celebrated the Queen’s Jubilee early with afternoon tea in Sutton.
The Hong Kongers had tea and cake with locals as part of an integration initiative led by the Volunteer Centre Sutton.
More than 110,000 Hong Kongers have been granted visas to come and live in the UK since the British Nationals Overseas scheme was launched last January.
Food for Tuesday’s event at Sutton Manor Park was provided by local volunteers.
Attendees enjoyed tea leaf eggs, milk sugar cake, pineapple buns, egg tarts, and roast pork pastry puffs.
They also sipped on milk tea provided by local business Trini.
Trini was set up in Sutton by Eric Wong, 44, who moved to the UK in December 2020.
Among the attendees was Janet Lo, 39, who moved to the UK from Hong Kong in August 2021.
“I have two kids and I really want to live in a place where they can enjoy their freedom of speech,” she told the PA news agency.
Ms Lo said she chose Sutton because of its large Hong Konger population.
“We feel that we can get support from each other,” she said.
“Also, the schools here are very good.”
She said she came to the event to “meet more local people and enjoy food and drink from Hong Kong and from Britain also”.
Ms Lo said she is looking forward to joining a street party near Buckingham Palace on Sunday.
Amelia Storey, 22, from Volunteer Centre Sutton, helped organise the event.
She said: “It’s really important that we host events like this so that we can break down some of those integration barriers and provide an opportunity to socialise with local residents to really aid and welcome them into the Sutton community.”
The centre decided to host a jubilee event because it was the perfect opportunity to mix British and Hong Konger culture, she said.
“It’s the perfect opportunity to mix the British celebrations of afternoon tea with Hong Kong milk tea”, she added.
Hong Konger Alex, in his 40s, arrived in the UK over a year ago and said he had been welcomed.
“I think mostly the British are quite patient and quite polite,” he said.
“They are also quite helpful and kind-hearted.”