Hindus, Sikhs and Jains came together on Saturday for a celebration of light.

A packed audience of more than 150 beckoned in the start of The Festival of Lights or Diwali at Victory Hall in Chigwell on November 3.

Entertainment came in the form of popular Indian artist Kamlesh Patel, who defies the odds to take the stage paralysed and with no legs.

After the Acharya Trayam Team mesmerized the audience with south Indian dances, chairman of Chigwell Parish Council Darshan Sunger switched on the Station Green lights - in doing so, signifying the victory of light over darkness.

Cllr Sunger said: "We were excepting around 20 to 50 residents but the event attracted a bigger number, bringing the community together.

"We are grateful to the Jewish community for letting the lights be set up on their structure at The Green.

"I also want to thank Ravi Bhanot, Pranov Bhanot and the Light Up London committee for their invaluable hard work in making this happen.

"Lastly I want to wish all the residents of Chigwell Parish and all those celebrating throughout the district a very happy Diwali and a prosperous new year."

Speeches of unity and good wishes then came from Chigwell Residents Association Chairman Jamie Braha, Buckhurst Hill Cllr Aniket Patel and Ranjot Singh OBE.

Mr Bhanot, who leads the organising Light Up London committee, said: "Diwali is about lights, enjoying sweets and getting together.

"This was certainly showed in the Diwali event."