A carnival is held annually at the end of August in Notting Hill Gate, London. Participants spend many months preparing for the event and competitions. The origin of the colourful costumes dates back to the West Indies slave trade. The slaves were not originally allowed to celebrate their own cultures/dances. Once they gained their freedom, they held carnivals and dressed up in garish costumes.This was done to mimic and make fun of the wives and western women who wore heavy makeup and ornate dresses, despite the harsh hot and humid environment.