JANUARY 1 2017 – 12:44AM
Sydney has done what it does best on New Year’s Eve with another dazzling pyrotechnics display to ring in 2017 after a year that many were happy to leave behind.
More than a million people squeezed along Sydney’s foreshore on Saturday for a double bill of fireworks that climaxed with a midnight extravaganza that set the harbour ablaze with light and colour.
Fireworks enthusiasts and excited tourists from all over the world descended on Sydney for its biggest annual event.
Donna Bennett has spent the past 20 years watching the display on television from her home in England, but finally got the chance to experience it live on Saturday.
“You can’t capture it on the screen, how it feels being surrounded by people from all over the world in this small area to watch the fireworks. It’s brilliant,” she said, sitting with several friends at Circular Quay.
“It’s been on my bucket list – it wasn’t an ‘if’, it was always a ‘when’.
Fellow Brits Adrian and Julie Jewitt-Holder returned to Sydney for New Year’s Eve after seven years.
“We’ve been here before but we’ve come back to see it again,” Mrs Jewitt-Holder said, adding the event has a popular reputation at home.
Sydney Harbour is set ablaze with light and colour as the city rings in 2017 with a bang. Photo: Wolter Peeters
Mrs Macquarie’s Point was full to bursting by Saturday afternoon, with a multitude of eager people camping overnight to snap up the best viewing spots.
The relaxed atmosphere resembled a huge picnic ground during the day, while toilet queues stretched dozens of metres despite ample port-a-loos.
A tribute to music legend Prince was a highlight of the night’s entertainment, with purple rain showering the harbour and illuminating the bridge and cascades of golden waterfalls.
The two displays involved an estimated seven tonnes of fireworks, including 12,000 shells, 25,000 shooting comets and 100,000 individual pyrotechnic effects.
Streets surrounding the harbour have been closed to traffic to accommodate the crowds, while more than 2000 plain clothes and uniformed police officers are patrolling the harbour and city.
Source : Sydney Morning Herald