Portsmouth weather: Fareham Christmas lights switch-on "significantly reduced" due to Met Office rain warning
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The Fareham Christmas Lights switch-on in West Street today has fallen foul of the poor forecast. The Met Office issued a yellow weather warning for rain, with intense showers and high winds set to hit the town and much of the south coast.
Fun fair rides and some gazebos are being cut due to the forecast. Councillor Sue Walker, executive member for leisure and community at Fareham Borough Council, said: “It is with regret that we have had to reduce this event.
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"A huge amount of work goes into making the Christmas Lights Switch On such a popular occasion, but the safety of stallholders, contractors, staff and guests has to be our priority. With heavy rain and high winds making gazebos and fun fair rides unsafe, this is the right thing to do on this occasion.”
Set up for the event will start earlier this morning so the store holders can trade safely. The council said wind speeds of up to 35mph are expected throughout the day and would make things unsafe for festive stalls and fun fair rides.
The local authority is hopeful that some street entertainment will take place from 3pm. Indoor activities are also taking place in West Street and Fareham Shopping Centre.
Christmas lights will still be switched on at 5.30pm, with the event being attended by the Mayor and Mayoress of Fareham, Fred and Lisa Birkett, as well as the winner of the summer colouring competition. The council said the event will not be rescheduled “as suppliers are already committed to attending other events in the run up to Christmas”.
More information regarding what events are being held on the day and where the indoor activities are taking place can be found on the Fareham Borough Council website. The Met Office’s yellow weather warning was issued at midnight and is in place until 10am.
The forecaster said spray and flooding could lead to difficult driving conditions, delays to public transport services are possible and flooding could take place in some areas.