Authorities involved in the popular Lewes Bonfire event in East Sussex are urging non-local visitors to refrain from attending this year, citing safety concerns. The event is organized by seven bonfire societies, some of which have a history dating back to the 19th century.
Last year, the bonfire event attracted a massive crowd, leading to significant overcrowding in the town. In light of this, the multi-agency group responsible for ensuring public safety is worried that even more people will attend this year as the event falls on a Saturday.
To manage the expected influx of visitors, changes will be implemented in train services and road closures. As a precautionary measure, no trains will run from Lewes, Glynde, Southease, Cooksbridge, and Falmer stations from 15:00 GMT on 4 November. The specific local road closures will be announced closer to the event.
The joint statement released by Lewes District Council and Eastbourne Borough Council emphasized that the Lewes Bonfire remains primarily an event for the local community. The combination of a larger crowd and the extensive use of fireworks poses unique challenges for ensuring public safety.
The authorities are collaborating to address these concerns and maintain a safe environment during the event. However, they are discouraging non-local visitors from attending to prevent further overcrowding, potential safety risks, and disruption to the local infrastructure.
The Lewes Bonfire is known for its colorful extravaganza and has become a highly anticipated event. Last year, the crowd reached an estimated 60,000 people. Nevertheless, the focus this year is on prioritizing the safety of the local community and working towards a successful and secure event.