Portsmouth fireworks and bonfire night 2023: Two events will take place in the city but the locations have not been revealed
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The two simultaneous fireworks displays will be held in the city after it was deemed that the reduced size of the King George V playing fields in Cosham was now too small to host the traditional event itself which usually takes place in the first week of November.
The idea was one of several mooted by city council leader – and cabinet member for culture – councillor Steve Pitt earlier this year when he revealed that the new football hub development had limited its ability to host a full-scale display.
But final details of the events, including their locations and times, have yet to be confirmed by the council with discussions still ongoing with emergency services to arrange logistics to cater for the thousands of attendees.
“With construction work underway at King George V playing fields, we’re planning two fireworks events at different locations this year,” Cllr Pitt said. “We want to make sure as many people as possible across the whole city can join in the fun and come along to these free family events which will take place on the same day and at the same time.
“The annual fireworks event is hugely popular and we’ll be announcing the date, venues and all the details of this year’s events soon. As ever, we’ll be lighting up the skies with spectacular fireworks and there’ll be live music and plenty of fun for the whole family.”
The council was criticised in March after it revealed that the event could not continue as normal, despite councillors being told a year previously that the football hub would have no impact on the playing fields’ ability to host large events.
Cllr Pitt said the firing zone for the fireworks and safety buffer area still remained but the reduction in space as a result of the construction of new all-weather pitches meant “there will not now be adequate space to enable the large numbers of attendees to safely watch and egress the event”.
He said concerns had also been raised by police about the number of visitors and issues caused by crossing surrounding roads.