Britain all set to party into 2011 despite cuts and fog

30th December 2010, Comments 0 comments

Thousands of revellers expected on the streets of UK's cities Clear skies predicted for Scotland but misty displays in LondonIce fairies, fireworks and all the other party pieces of New Year's Eve are set to take over Britain's big citiestomorrow night, in spite of lingering fog and the bite of recession.Hundreds of thousands of revellers are expected to take to the streets to welcome in 2011, with only a few cautious councils holding back on spending.Tickets have sold out for the biggest of the celebrations, in Edinburgh, where clear skies are expected after a fortnight of snow and ice. Newcastle and Gateshead's joint Snow Queen event expects 10,000 followers and London's predicted crowds have prompted the Metropolitan police to set up a Twitter feed to update partygoers on bottlenecks, public transport and the best views of the fireworks.The Meteorological Office says mist and fog will be a risk in most areas, lending fireworks an eerie atmosphere. London's big display at the London Eye is expected to be like the Millennium spectacular, when Concorde flew low but unseen above the Thames against a wild pyrotechnic blur.Similar murk is expected across England and Wales, but Cardiff is nevertheless laying on an array of masquerade, retro and fireworks parties. Manchester is offering ice-skating right up to the chimes, when fireworks will be triggered from Quay House in the city centre.On Tyneside the centres of both Newcastle and Gateshead will be surrendered to the Winter Carnival, led from 3pm by the Snow Queen and her court of monkeys, skeletons, ice fairies with at midnight fireworks. Liverpool is majoring on club events, including a gig by homegrown X Factor runner-up Rebecca Ferguson and assorted ice palaces, luges and frozen fountains at the Newz bar.In London, Trafalgar Square will be the focus of the revelry as usual, monitored by the Met's tweets @CO11MetPolice and more than 3,000 officers. An online map of access, station closures and the like will be updated throughout the evening.Leeds will be the centre of DIY fun, with 33,000 saved by the council's decision to drop its usual fireworks and music.Festivities in Belfast are also likely to be muted, although the city council has eased water restrictions for the night to help celebrations along.Neither city has had complaints about being mean, and a New Year's Eve survey by National Savings and Investments claims 48% of Britons intend to stay in. A further 44% say they will cut the cost of celebrating, with 31% planning to go to free events such as firework displays.The fog will cloak the parsimonious and extravagant alike, according to Met Office forecaster Mark Seltzer. He said: "It will be mostly cloudy across the UK with mist and fog patches and the odd bit of drizzle, all combined with low-lying cloud.Scotland is expected to get the best of the clear weather, helping Hogmanay in Glasgow and Aberdeen as well as Edinburgh. But temperatures will drop as a result with between 1C and 2C 33-35F forecast, compared with 6C 42F in London. The RAC warned drivers across the country to take extra care with "pea-souper" fog lingering between thinner mist.New YearBritish identity and societyScotlandMartin © Guardian News & Media Limited 2010 Use of this content is subject to our Terms & Conditions More Feeds

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