GUY FAWKES’ night could be a lot quieter in Brighton and Hove this year as the city’s biggest fireworks display looks set to be cancelled.
Organisers of the Brighton Lions Fireworks Display are struggling to find a venue after news that re-laying of the outfield at Sussex County Cricket Club’s County Ground in Hove would not be completed on time.
Lions president Brian Slater said there were still “one or two irons in the fire” but he was not “overly optimistic” that this year’s event would go ahead.
He said a repeat of this year’s expected cancellation in 2015 could put the future of the whole 64-year-old organisation in doubt.
The Argus is appealing for anyone with a potential venue to help save this year’s event.
Organisers said the site must be big enough to accommodate a minimum of 5,000 people and have crowds at least 80m from the fireworks while still being enclosed so the event cannot easily be watched for free.
Last year, more than 8,000 pyrotechnic fans watched the Lions’ fireworks display at the County Ground, raising £34,000 for the charity and cricket club.
Organisers have already bought fireworks worth £10,000 for the event but are hopeful that the majority can be used again next year.
Mr Slater said: “We are hoping it might still go ahead this year but we are not overly optimistic. It’s very unfortunate.
“We have really been hit for six with this news.
“We have used the County Ground for a number of years and, even though they were relaying some of the outfield, we still thought we could be there again this year. But it turns out that the work is more extensive than they thought.
“There are not that many sites around Brighton and Hove where we could actually do this thing.
“It is our biggest fundraiser but while it makes things difficult for us, we are determined to keep going exactly as before.
“We should be alright for 12 months but if we had to cancel again next year, we would be in trouble.”
If you can help with a venue suggestion for the Lions, email email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.