Why Newcastle will not have a fireworks display this New Year’s Eve

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The annual fireworks display over the Quayside was cancelled in 2021 and won’t be returning this year as a laser light show is favoured instead.

For the second year running, there will not be an official New Year's Eve fireworks display in Newcastle to bring in the New Year.

Last year, the annual extravaganza was cancelled due to the spread of the Omicron Covid-19 variant and fear of crowding. Instead, a laser light display was brought to the Quayside with beams shining across the River Tyne.

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At the time, Newcastle City Council leader Nick Forbes said it was "not a decision we have taken lightly". He added: "In light of the new Omicron variant and rise in Covid cases we have a duty of care to minimise transmission and keep people safe."

This year, with the restrictions and worried surrounding Covid-19 last year now not so present, some Geordies may have hoped for a return to the fireworks tradition - but that won't be happening.

Instead, Newcastle City Council is turning to the Laser Light City display once again as a "safer and more environmentally friendly alternative to fireworks". It is a decision being taken by a number of councils this year for those reasons, alongside a growing number of voices pointing out the impact such displays can have on pets.

Councillor Lesley Storey, Cabinet Member for A Vibrant City at Newcastle City Council said: “The build-up to Christmas has been wonderful in the city, and now we turn our attention to the New Year, and the start of what we hope will be a very happy and positive 2023.

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“The Laser Lights were so well received last year I am delighted that we are welcoming them back. It means we are able to offer an innovative and incredibly visual event in the city that is free to attend and open to everyone.

“It’s also great that the laser lights are a safer and more environmentally friendly alternative to fireworks to support the city’s carbon zero ambitions, whilst also ensuring less noise pollution and being pet friendly too. And as the lights shows are happening at regular intervals over three days, it is such an accessible event. Families with young children will be able to visit the earlier shows, and those out celebrating New Year's Eve have something to enjoy as we welcome in 2023.”

Fireworks could become a thing of the past in favour of new laser technology (Image: Getty Images)Fireworks could become a thing of the past in favour of new laser technology (Image: Getty Images)
Fireworks could become a thing of the past in favour of new laser technology (Image: Getty Images)

You can find out all you need to know about what the Laser Light City display is and when to watch this New Year's Eve in Newcastle here. There is also a guide available on the Newcastle City Council website.

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