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February - March 2008
"New Year 2008 is celebrated in London at the start of its Olympic year"
London brings in 2008 in spectacular Olympic style
Crowds estimated at around 700,000 (nearly ten per cent of Londoners) headed to traditional central London areas and to the River Thames for the annual fireworks and lighting display at the British Airways London Eye, which was organised by the Mayor of London with Visit London.
The Mayor said: ‘Hundreds of thousands of people have enjoyed a magnificent and spectacular start to 2008 with brilliant fireworks and free public transport, and millions more will have been able to enjoy it live on television. With the equivalent of one in ten Londoners enjoying the fireworks in central London alone, it shows a city seeing in the New Year in style. The New Year’s fireworks are always a highlight in London but even more so this year as 2008 is the year London becomes host city for the Olympic Games. The success of this outstanding event is thanks to the many agencies that are committed to producing a safe and enjoyable night and shows how well the city can stage world-class public events. My very best wishes for 2008.’
Revellers crowded along the river and on bridges to watch the fireworks display after Big Ben has struck midnight. The show, produced by award-winning London based experiential marketing agency Jack Morton Worldwide and internationally renowned pyrotechnician Christophe Berthonneau, included giant and iconic Olympic inspired images, and a musical accompaniment of specially mixed music by BBC Radio 1 DJs Rob da Bank and Gilles Peterson.
The projections, projected onto the Shell Building on the Southbank, were designed to reflect the fact that 2008 will see London take over as host city following the Olympic and Paralympic Games in Beijing in August. London is set to stage series of events throughout the year in celebration of the Games, including the Olympic Torch Relay on 6 April and the launch of the Cultural Olympiad in the autumn.
Photo Credit: James Jenkins