New Year’s Eve plans have been canceled in many parts of the UK this evening – with fireworks displays being canned due to fierce winds.
The last minute decision to cancel festivals in the South of England came as the Met Office issued a yellow weather warning.
Strong winds of 75mph hitting the south of the county saw the Winter Wonderland event in Plymouth and the Devon town’s fireworks display this afternoon.
Organizers of the Plymouth event said: “While we are disappointed and disappointed, your safety, as well as ours, is a priority and we cannot take any chances.”
In Devon, Barnstaple Town Center Management said it had canceled its fireworks show due to the weather.
They said: “Unfortunately due to weather conditions and gusty winds we are unable to display fireworks tonight for safety reasons.
“We know this is disappointing, but safety always comes first and unfortunately we cannot control the weather.”
A yellow weather warning is now in place for many parts of the country, with winds likely to sweep across the south of the country and rain expected in the south.
Gusty winds are expected to hit the entire south coast of the country as well as the west while gusts sweep east.
Forecasters have warned gusts will start blowing at around 10am today, until 11.59pm – as Britons welcome 2024.
And while gusts of wind sweep through, rain is also expected to fall at the same time across the country.
The weather is looking to be particularly wet in Blackpool, Blackburn, Bolton and as far away as Lancaster between 6pm and 6am tomorrow.
Two million people are expected to fill 40,000 bars across the country tonight.
Of those, more than 100,000 people are expected to flock to central London to watch the midnight fireworks – with tens of thousands flocking to Hogmanay in Edinburgh.
However, with the Met Office yesterday issuing a tornado warning for southern parts of the UK and Ireland, many people may choose to stay at home.
Asda is said to sell a bottle of sparkling wine every second, while also selling two million bottles of spirits.
And it’s no surprise that forecasters are now warning today’s strong winds could cause traffic chaos as heavy rain follows.
The agency warned that road, rail, air and ferry transport could be affected, while the coastline could become dangerous with large waves.
They also warned high-riding vehicles to be careful on the roads, while power could be cut across the UK.
Wind warnings cover from Cardigan in Wales, down to Truro and all the way to Folkestone – with gusts likely to reach 75mph on the coast.
The Met Office has warned of heavy rain to fall across north Manchester, which could flood homes and affect travel.
It comes after a small tornado appeared in Devon last night – just hours after the warning was issued.