Colors: Red Color

2016 has been an exciting and eventful year for the city with the capital welcoming a record 8.8 million overseas visitors in the first half of the year. While notable events and openings included the commemoration of the 350th anniversary of the Great Fire of London and the Design Museum opening its new home in Kensington. There are hundreds of great places to see in the New Year but these are some of our favourite places to raise a glass to 2017!

David Attenborough's Planet Earth II has been one of the most succesful shows of 2016 and is set to launch in the US in January. Following the series finale on Sunday travel company Cyplon holidays have released an infographic mapping the nature documentary's filming locations across all 7 continents. The infographic released by Cyplon Holidays charts the places and creatures featured on both series 1 and 2 of the television series, allowing UK viewers to relive memorable moments of the show and US audiences to anticipate the series' release in the US in January 2017.

Amazon today announced that Amazon Prime Video is now available to customers in more than 200 countries and territories around the globe. Customers around the world can now enjoy popular new original series like The Grand Tour from Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May (currently the top-rated TV show on IMDb with an overall rating of 9.4 and over 20,000 votes) and award-winning Amazon Original Series like The Man in the High Castle, Transparent, Mozart in the Jungle, Tumble Leaf and more.

Slade's timeless hit has been confirmed as one of the biggest sounds of Christmas, according to a survey from national charity Action on Hearing Loss. The poll, published today, highlights the sounds that people associate with Christmas the most. For many, it’s the screams of siblings fighting, the in-laws arguing or Coca-Cola’s ‘Holidays are coming!’ advert, however over half of people (51.7%) said that carols and songs are the sounds that remind them most of Christmas.

The competition couldn’t have been closer, but when Danny, Louise and Ore went head to head in the final of Strictly Come Dancing, there could be only one winner of the coveted glitterball trophy. Ore and Joanne danced with their all to take the top spot in Strictly Come Dancing for 2016. With a couple of perfect 10's thrown in for all 3 acts it was a very tough final to call, but congratulations to Ore and Joanne!

Art lovers are being urged to vote for a Wolverhampton Art Gallery painting after it was named in the top ten of a national survey. Spirit of the Carnival by Tam Joseph is among ten other paintings in UK galleries, which the public can vote for in The Art Fund competition. The Art Fund, which for more than a century has been helping museums and galleries buy and display great works of art for everyone to enjoy, has selected the painting.

Norwich has always been an exciting cultural city and 2017 is no exception with a host of fantastic exhibitions, festivals, performances and special events, ranging from a newly restored Baby House at Strangers' Hall - part of the V&A Small Stories exhibition at Norwich Castle - and a quarter of a lost Magritte canvas found late 2016 to a new exhibition - Rembrandt: Lightening in the Dark - featuring the nationally important collection of 93 Rembrandt etchings held by Norfolk Museums Service and The Russian Season at the Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts, revealing how the creativity of Fabergé came to extend from St. Petersburg and the court of the Romanovs, to a dairy on Norfolk's Sandringham Estate.

Sandwell's first-ever mini continental-style festive market has opened in West Bromwich town centre and will be running for six days a week in the run-up to Christmas. Sandwell Council market bosses have come up with something a little different for the town, and each day from Monday to Saturday there will be a variety of interesting stalls in the pedestrianised area of the High Street between Kings Square and Queens Square.

VisitEngland has cited 2017 to be the year of the Literary Hero, a subject Norwich knows much about considering its rich literary history spanning over 900 years and its status as UNESCO City of Literature (awarded in 2012); it was the first English city to achieve this. Norwich was home to Julian of Norwich - the first woman to be published in the English language - as well as the first recognisable novel, the first blank verse, the first provincial library and newspaper, the first British MA in Creative Writing, the first UK City of Refuge for persecuted writers, and so it continues.

Following the stunning success of their Platinum selling album ‘Together’ and 29 sold out shows across the UK in 2016, Michael Ball and Alfie Boe have announced today that they will return in 2017 for a selection of exclusive dates throughout the country. Summer will see them performing outdoors at some of the UK’s most beautiful stately homes and castles, with six dates announced in June. In winter, they’ll come back inside to play ten arena dates in November and December.

A retired schoolteacher from Solihull has teamed up with Birmingham Conservatoire, as they join the race for the Christmas number one, while highlighting the particular struggles faced by those affected by dementia over the Festive period. Birmingham-born Alan Stott has written big band hit ‘What Are We Gonna Do For Christmas?’ with an arrangement by Birmingham Conservatoire fourth year BMus Jazz student, Josh Tagg. Jazz students from across all years of study also perform on the track.

A memorial tea dance is to be held at Wolverhampton Civic Hall later this month to remember renowned city organist Steve Tovey, who passed away earlier this year. Steve, from Hazel Slade Cannock, had been resident organist at Wolverhampton's Civic Hall since 1993 and enjoyed an illustrious 50-year career in the music industry. He was dedicated to playing organ music in venues up and down the country, and sadly passed away suddenly in September, aged 69.

‘X Factor Arabia’ winner Hamza Hawsawi is the next artist to be part of the free concert series at Dubai International Airport The Saudi Arabian singer, who was on X Factor Arabia’ in 2015, is the next #musicDXB artist, and will perform at Dubai International Airport on December 23. The singer-songwriter, who made history by winning the reality show despite singing only in English, will take the stage in Concourse B at 1am.

Local amateur photographer Simon Lea has snapped-up a top BBC Countryfile's 'Autumn colours' photo contest with his stunning photograph of Warley Woods. Simon Lea's photograph of the autumnal hues of the Wood captured the prize, seeing off competition from all over the country by winning a public vote on Countryfile's website. The eye-catching photograph is part of Simon's wide-ranging portfolio of pictures which concentrates on areas around his home town of Bearwood.