London NYE 2013 Fireworks

31 December 2013

This event has already taken place

Celebrate New Year’s Eve and welcome 2014 with a bang at the London NYE 2013 Fireworks, a free event presented by Vodafone and the Mayor of London. Very large crowds are expected on the night with limited viewing areas, and the surrounding areas of London will be extremely busy, so if you’d rather watch the spectacular from the comfort of your own home the fireworks will be shown live on BBC 1.

Flashing fireworks

The night skies will be a blaze of light and colour at midnight on New Year’s Eve with a display of stunning pyrotechnics from the EDF Energy London Eye on the famous South Bank.

Plan your journey

See the full list of multiple road, bridge, station, tube line closures on the tab above. 

The show

As the clock strikes 12, Big Ben’s famous 'bongs' will be relayed across the viewing areas, before the UK’s biggest annual fireworks display takes place to a specially created musical soundtrack.

Once the fireworks come to an end, join together with friends and strangers alike for a rendition of Auld Lang Syne.

The celebrations carry on until 12:45am with a live DJ set. Stay to the end and you’ll find it easier getting out of the viewing areas for your journey home.

See the full list of road, bridge, station, tube line closures and plan your journey using the above tab.

Mayor's message 

“With so much to see and do, London is one of the most exciting places to enjoy the festive season and to bring in the New Year. Ours is a city of dynamism, exuberance and soaring ambition, which is encapsulated in the always magnificent fireworks display that heralds another exciting twelve months in the life of our great capital.”

Partners

London NYE 2013 Fireworks presented by Vodafone and the Mayor of London would not be possible without the support of many different organisations and agencies. Special thanks go to the EDF Energy London Eye, Westminster City Council, the London boroughs of Lambeth and Southwark, City of London Corporation, Metropolitan Police Service, British Transport Police, London Fire Brigade and London Ambulance Service, St John Ambulance, Transport for London, the Port of London Authority, The Shell Centre, BBC TV and radio and event producers, Jack Morton Worldwide.

Plan ahead & travel

Plan ahead

New Year’s Eve in London is great - but it is also extremely busy and there will be very large crowds with limited space in the viewing areas.

Many people choose to see in the New Year at home with family and friends. The fireworks will be shown live on BBC 1, and Visit London has a comprehensive list of events local to you over the Christmas and New Year period. 

If you choose to come into central London you should plan your journey on public transport to and from the fireworks as there will be major changes to regular tube and train services and many roads and bridges will be close to traffic – full details are below. You can also download and print this useful pocket guide.

No ordinary night

Each year around 250,000 people come and watch the London NYE midnight fireworks display on the banks of the Thames. The viewing areas fill with large crowds and close when capacity is full. As viewing areas start to fill, visitors will be re-directed by stewards and police via marked walking routes to other viewing areas, however if you are not in a viewing area by 10.30pm you will not be able to see the fireworks.

Lots of pubs and clubs are also ticketed entry on the night, so if you haven’t booked in advance it may be hard to find somewhere to enjoy the evening. Before deciding to head out, consider how long you are prepared to stand outside waiting for the display to start, especially in the cold, and then how long it will take to get home.

Free travel

Travel is free on all TfL journeys from 11:45pm on New Year’s Eve until 4:30am on New Year’s Day this includes bus, tube, tram, DLR and London Overground services.

Tube and train stations

There will be major changes to regular tube and train services and you may have to use different routes or station entrances with specific queuing arrangements. Do plan your journey both to and from the event and follow directions from stewards, police or rail and underground staff on the night.

Remember you might not be able to use the same route home as the one you took to travel into central London. Be aware that stations may have to close at short notice to ensure public safety. The anticipated station closure and reopening times are shown below. These may be subject to change on the night. 

Station and tube line closures and timings

Blackfriars: exit only from 10pm until 1am. No direct access to viewing areas.

Cannon St: Closes 9pm, reopens 6am.

Charing Cross: Tube access only via Strand/Villiers St. Exit only from 11:45pm; reopens by 3am. Entry and exit for National Rail – last trains at 2:40am.

Covent Garden: Exit only from 7pm; reopens by 3am.

Embankment: Access only via Strand/Villiers St. Closes between 11:30pm-12:15am.

Euston: National rail last trains at 2am.

Fenchurch Street: National rail last trains at 2.30am.

Holborn:  to operate as planned for as long as practical.

Kensington (Olympia): Closed.

Kings Cross: National rail last trains at 2.36am.

Lambeth North: Closes 11:30pm; reopens by 3am.

Leicester Square: Interchange and exit only from 8pm; reopens 12:15am.

Liverpool Street: National rail last trains at 4am.

London Bridge: National rail last trains at 2.51am.

Mansion House: to operate as planned for as long as practical.

Marylebone: National rail last trains at 3am.

Paddington: National rail last trains at 3:34am.

Russell Square: Exit only from 10:30pm; reopens 3am.

St James Park: one-way system in operation, but anticipated entry and exit all night.

St Pauls: to operate as planned for as long as practical.

Southwark: Exit only from 23.00, reopens when possible

St Pancras: National Rail last trains at 3.50am

Temple: no direct access to the Embankment

Victoria: National rail last trains at 3.47am

Waterloo: Entry via The Cut/Baylis Rd junction. Long queues after 12:10am. National Rail last trains at 4am

Waterloo East: Closes at 23.45, reopens 6am

Westminster: Interchange and exit only from 9:30pm; closes at 10pm, reopens 2am

Waterloo & City line: Service will run every 6-8 minutes between 06:00 until 02:00

Circle & Hammersmith & City line: Service every 10 minutes between18:30 until 03:30 

Your journey will take much longer than usual, especially once the fireworks finish and the crowds head home. If you plan to get a tube or train on your journey home, consider walking part of the way or to a station far from the viewing areas. If heading to Charing Cross, Embankment or Waterloo stations please follow the signed routes. One way systems will be put in place to ease overcrowding; you will be required to wait at certain exit or junction points as stewards and police disperse the crowds, however you are likely to experience queues of up to 90 minutes at these nearby stations.

Travel grid

Download and print this grid in our useful pocket guide.

Road closures

Vehicle access will be restricted from 5pm until around 6am on New Year’s Day. The area of closures runs from Oxford Street in the north to Lambeth Bridge in the south, Blackfriars Bridge in the east to Vauxhall Bridge in the west. Road closures will be phased in from 5-10pm.

Waterloo Road will not be accessible from the IMAX roundabout from 10:30pm. The route to access Waterloo Station from 10:30pm onwards will be east along Stamford Street, south along Blackfriars Road, then west along The Cut – approximately a 1 mile route in total. Waterloo Station will also be accessible via Baylis Road. If you have mobility issue, you are advised to use an alternative station for your journey home.

View our map of road closures.

Bridge closures to pedestrians

Golden Jubilee footbridges: Close 8pm–2am.
Westminster Bridge: Closes 8pm-1am, access from south of the river only.
Vauxhall Bridge & London Bridge: offer the closest river crossing to the viewing areas.
Other bridges will not be affected.

Bus

Bus services leaving central London will be progressively withdrawn and diverted from 5pm and buses will start to return to normal from 5am, however, some services will remain suspended on New Year’s Day.

After 8pm on New Year’s Eve there will be bus services to:

  • West London from Green Park station
  • North and east London from Holborn station and Goodge Street station
  • North and west London from Hyde Park Corner, Marble Arch and Oxford Circus
  • South London from Imperial War Museum and Elephant and Castle, Vauxhall and Victoria

Taxis and minicabs

Taxis (black cabs) and minicabs will not be able to enter central London where road closures are in place. Taxis can still be hailed on the street outside of the road closure area. Minicabs must be booked with a TfL-licensed minicab operator; you can find contact details for licensed minicab operators and also taxi booking services here.

Remember only licensed taxis (black cabs) can pick up passengers on the street. Any minicab driver who picks up customers without a booking is acting illegally.

Useful contacts

Tube, Bus, DLR and TfL London Overground services:

www.tfl.gov.uk/journeyplanner or 03432221234

National Rail services (fare charges apply):

www.nationalrail.co.uk or 08457 48 49 50.

Access

Accessible viewing area

The accessible viewing areas are at Albert Embankment, opposite the Houses of Parliament and Thames Path behind St Thomas’s Hospital. Access to the disabled viewing area is via Lambeth Palace Road. Be aware road closures in the area may restrict vehicle access for drop off nearby. View our map of full road closures.

There is no blue badge parking nearby however, drop off to the accessible viewing area is permitted on presentation of a blue badge to the stewards/police at the road closure points.

Users of the accessible viewing area are permitted one carer to accompany them. Places are on a first come, first served basis and it is recommended you arrive before 10.30pm. Places cannot be guaranteed, however, no person who has required access to the accessible viewing area has been turned away in past years.

Disabled toilet facilities

Disabled facilities are available at all toilet locations as well as designated viewing areas listed above. Trafalgar Square toilets will also be open until 1am.

Step-free station

Westminster Station is the closest level access/no step access station to the viewing areas and this will close from 9pm-2am to prevent overcrowding. To find out more, visit the TfL website or National Rail website.

First aid assistance

If you require first aid, St John Ambulance London treatment centres will be located at:

  • Trafalgar Square (west side)
  • Charing Cross Station forecourt
  • Parliament Square /Great George Street
  • Belvedere Road / Westminster Bridge Road
  • The Mall (near Duke of York Steps)
  • Whitehall Court
  • Embankment Place
  • Temple Place / Surrey Street
  • BFI IMAX Cinema
  • Savoy Place / Embankment
  • Waterloo Station
  • Leicester Square
  • Piccadilly Circus

Toilets

Temporary toilets are situated at the following areas:

  • Westminster Bridge
  • Westminster Bridge Road outside St Thomas' Hospital
  • Queens Walk outside Royal Festival Hall
  • Belvedere Road underneath Jubilee Bridge
  • Horse Guards Avenue at the junction with the Mall

In addition there are public toilets on Trafalgar Square until 1am.

Dos & don’ts

Large crowds can sometimes be uncomfortable and unsettling, so make sure you are fully prepared with the following tips.

Do

  • Expect very large crowds – it will be extremely busy with limited viewing areas
  • Plan your journey (using the above tab) to and from the fireworks as there are multiple road, bridge, station and tube line closures; remember your departure station/route may be different to your arrival route
  • Viewing areas will close when full
  • Use the walking route to access the viewing areas
  • Allow plenty of time for your journey home
  • Consider walking part of your journey home as at some stations there will be very long queues of up to 90 minutes
  • Be aware that stations may close at short notice for public safety
  • Follow signs and listen to stewards – they are there to keep you safe
  • Report anything suspicious to a police officer, steward or TfL staff
  • Keep valuables well-hidden – pickpockets operate in large crowds
  • Stay hydrated and please drink responsibly - no food or drink is on sale in the viewing areas
  • Wrap up warm – you can get very cold standing still outside for several hours in winter
  • Stay together with friends and agree a pre-arranged meeting point if you do get lost as you may not be able to rely on mobile phone networks
  • Bring any medication you need with you
  • Visit the First Aid points if you need medical assistance before calling 999 – see first aid points on the map tab above

Don’t

  • Don’t bring glass into the viewing areas – alcohol will be permitted in plastic bottles
  • Don’t bring buggies or very small children – there will be very large, dense crowds
  • Don’t push forward when in crowds – you may not be able to see what is happening further ahead