Marlow’s annual New Year's Eve firework display looks set to be cancelled this year over safety fears.

Authorities are worried that Marlow Bridge is too weak to hold the number of people that the fireworks hosted by Compleat Angler would attract.

This comes after the local police superintendent witnessed the bridge “swaying” during the last firework display in 2018.

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It was agreed that the display would not be held in 2019 after the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead (RBWM), who are responsible for the Safety Advisory Group on the river and the licensing of the hotel, approached the local management with these worries.

The coronavirus pandemic then halted any plans in 2020 but Thames Valley Police have now warned the hotel if they plan to host the fireworks this year it risks “members of the public falling into the river.”

However, the hotel believes that the council “delayed talking” to them so any formal event plan would be “highly unlikely” to be cleared in time for the event. 

Erick Kervao, general manager at the hotel, said: “I am bitterly disappointed that the Compleat Angler has been prevented from holding our traditional New Year’s Eve fireworks display in Marlow this year. 

“I know that for decades our fireworks have always been enjoyed by Marlow residents and visitors to the town and, for many, have been the highlight of their New Year’s Eve celebrations. 

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“We have always seen it as an opportunity to keep connected with the heart of the town and for the hotel to give back a little to this wonderful place and to say a small ‘thank you’ to the local people who use our facilities on an ongoing basis. 

“Rest assured that I and my team will continue to try and collaborate with the RBWM and Bucks Councils and work out a plan that will allow us to hold this important event again in the future.” 

Councillor David Cannon, cabinet member for public protection, said: “While this is a private, for hotel guests event, in previous years it has attracted a large number of members of the public who gather on the Buckinghamshire bank of the river and on Marlow Bridge – a designated weak bridge with a weight limit – to watch the display, causing serious safety concerns for multiple authorities.

“Public health and safety is the top priority in the running of any event. 

“Following our multi-agency Safety Advisory Group meeting in September, we asked the hotel to produce and submit an event safety plan in advance to consider and address these safety issues and the wider impact of the event, but have yet to receive this.”