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Media release issued by the multi-agency group in charge of ensuring the safety of the public on Lewes Bonfire Night:

With Lewes Bonfire Night just days away, people are being reminded that there will be changes to the train services and closures on roads.

The measures, which were announced in the summer, are being brought in to help the event pass safely by managing the number of people attending.

Emergency services, local authorities and transport operators have been planning for the celebrations for many months, and are warning against complacency.

There remain serious concerns about overcrowding in the narrow streets of Lewes and people are being asked not to travel to the event.

Superintendent Howard Hodges said: “Public safety is our priority, and that’s why we’re urging everyone to stay local this bonfire night.

“Whilst recognising the tradition of Lewes Bonfire night, it is important the event held – and those attending – are kept safe.

“In order to achieve this, a wide range of partners have worked with the bonfire societies to put practical measures in place. This includes road and rail restrictions, which are designed to reduce the number of people coming to Lewes in order to avoid overcrowding.

“We appreciate there will be some disruption on the night as a result, however this has been done in the best interests of public safety. We have also publicised these measures months in advance to ensure people can plan ahead for this one night of the year.

“There are a number of other events taking place around Sussex and we’re urging everyone to attend an event near them.”

Nigel Cusack from East Sussex Fire and Rescue is calling on people to Stay Local and find alternative events nearer to them. He said:

“Fireworks can look spectacular but they can also be extremely dangerous if not handled properly. We strongly urge people to find local firework events and displays rather than releasing fireworks in their gardens. There are many locally organised firework displays across Sussex for local communities to attend rather than attending one single event such as Lewes, which can become over-crowded very quickly.”

Ed Hele from Lewes District Council said:

“Lewes is a wonderful town but it was not built to accommodate large crowds. We work hard to try to keep everyone as safe as possible and we support the calls for people who don’t live in Lewes to go to more local events.”

Road closures will be put in place around the town centre from 16.45 pm on 5 November 2019 as follows:

A27 junction with A277 Brighton Road (Ashcombe Roundabout)
A27 junction with A26 (Southerham Roundabout)
A26 junction with B2192 Ringmer Road (Earwig Corner)
C7 Kingston Road junction with C324 Wellgreen Lane
A275 Offham Rd junction with B2116 Plumpton Road
A27 junction with Southerham Lane (Cliffe Industrial Estate)

Rail travel

Plans for rail travel on 5 November are as follows:

There will be no trains calling at Lewes, Glynde and Southease after 17.00 in line with the Lewes Road closure order.
There will be no trains calling at Cooksbridge after the 16.16 from Victoria to Eastbourne has stopped there at 17.20 – the same as last year following representations and review.
There will be no trains calling at Falmer after the departure of the 18.31 Brighton to Hastings service at 18.40. This is a change from last year, when the last train was at 17.00, and it has been made in response to feedback.
No trains will call at the above stations until the first timetabled trains on the morning of 6 November.

We recognise that there will be an impact on train passengers and road users who are not planning to attend the event. The decision to bring in travel restrictions has been made in the best interests of safety. We hope that those who are inconvenienced will understand that and have time to make alternative arrangements where possible.