Wiltshire

Lanterns on lake event in Swindon cancelled

Lanterns on the Lake, at Coate Water
Image caption The festival involved launching hundreds of lanterns across the water

The Lanterns on the Lake festival in Swindon will not be held again because it is too popular, the borough council has said.

The event, at Coate Water, had been held since the early 1990s to mark World Peace Day.

Last summer's festival and this year's event were both cancelled.

Parks manager Martin Hambidge said the festival had grown to such a size it was difficult for his staff and volunteers to manage.

Mr Hambidge said: "People were bringing in their own lanterns and setting sail to them and, with the sheer numbers of people that were around the lake at that particular time in the semi-gloom, it was getting more and more difficult for us to 'police' the event safely.

"We had our ranger team taking all day on it and there was quite a lot of preparation work which we used volunteers for.

"Volunteers also attended on the day, so it was principally just about labour and the fact it took up an awful lot of volunteer hours and a lot of staff hours and we wanted to do different things."

The festival involved hundreds of lanterns, each representing a lost soul, being launched across the water to commemorate the day two atomic bombs were dropped on the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

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