Every year thousands of Londoners gather on the banks of the Thames to watch the annual New Year’s Eve firework display. But for the second year in a row, the show has been cancelled due to COVID uncertainty.
This week a representative for the Mayor of London stated, “Due to the uncertainty caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, our world-famous New Year’s Eve display will not be held on the banks of the Thames this year..”
Despite this sad news, it sounds as though the Mayor hasn’t cancelled New Year altogether and is planning other ways for London to celebrate, with a Trafalgar Square celebration being expected to be announced soon.
What are the London New Year’s Eve Fireworks?
The first-ever New Year’s Eve Fireworks display in London happened in 1999 to welcome in the new millennium. Since then, it’s been an almost yearly occurrence with a wonderful firework display being put on on the banks of the Thames, near the London Eye (and often incorporating the London Eye). Big Ben is also utilised in the show to chime in each new year.
Each year the fireworks incorporate events from the past year in the country, and for the year ahead. For example, when chiming in 2012, fireworks in the shape of the Olympic flag lit up the London skyline. Whilst the fireworks that saw the end of 2017 commemorated those who lost their lives in Manchester at the Ariana Grande concert. Each year the fireworks in London are moving and visually spectacular, and have become a tradition for Londoners to watch.
What Happened to the London New Year’s Eve Fireworks in 2020?
The COVID pandemic was still in full swing in December of 2020, and so with a national lockdown, the fireworks were cancelled. However, this didn’t mean that London didn’t celebrate the end of a tough year. Instead, the capital city aired a live television show that featured significant London landmarks, with a fabulous drone display. The drone display paid homage to the heroes of the past year, with their being tributes to Sir Captain Tom, the NHS, and the Black Lives Matter movement. The final display was voiced by Sir David Attenborough and was an environmental appeal – the show also boasted being London’s most environmentally-friendly celebration!
Why Are There No Fireworks Despite No Restrictions Being in London in 2021?
Although large scale events have been taking place across the capital, with concerts, theatres, restaurants, and even festivals taking place in 2021. It seems as though Sadiq Khan, the Mayor of London, has taken an executive decision to not encourage thousands to congregate on the banks of the river. With this winter expected to have the worst flu season in years, it seems as though London is taking a cautious route.
Despite the fireworks being cancelled, the representative also said, “Last year’s successful show took place in a slightly different way due to the pandemic, and this year a number of exciting new options are being considered as part of our New Year’s Eve celebrations in London.” Meaning we should be expecting some sort of New Year’s Eve celebration from London, although at this point we are still left to guess what it could be!
With so many wonderful pubs, clubs, bars, and restaurants we don’t doubt New Year in London will be a fabulous occasion!
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