Having a Party tonight? - then read on . . . .

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Chat' started by Roger Thorne, Dec 31, 2007.

  1. Roger Thorne

    Roger Thorne Active Member

    Have a great New Year's Eve

    Steven Morris - The Guardian, Monday, December 31, 2007

    For most, New Year's Eve is the culmination of a fun-filled party marathon, the last chance to enjoy a final festive fling as the season of goodwill to all draws to a close. But a series of decidedly dire warnings from ministers, police and insurance companies yesterday provided a reminder that too often misery quickly follows new year jollity.

    One survey revealed that almost three-quarters of convicted burglars put New Year's Eve as the top holiday to go breaking and entering because people are away and homes are full of Christmas goodies.

    According to the survey, from a leading insurance company, the top five targets for burglars are money and credit cards, laptops, digital cameras, jewellery and the latest games consoles.

    If the burglars do not get you, the drink might. The Home Office minister Vernon Coaker urged people to drink responsibly tonight, pointing out that about half of all violent crime is alcohol-related and eight out of 10 pedestrians killed on party nights had been drinking.

    "For many of us New Year's Eve will be the biggest party of the year and having a few drinks is all part of the fun," Coaker said. "But it is worth remembering that when things go wrong and people get hurt, reckless alcohol consumption has often played a part." Experts from the Drinkaware Trust said New Year's Eve posed "potentially fatal challenges" for young people. Its chief executive, Jean Collingwood, said: "We urge teenagers to remember that drinking opens you up to accidents, injuries and even alcoholic poisoning, any of which can potentially ruin the start to your new year."

    The Roofie Foundation charity also warned people to beware of drinks being spiked, saying that drug-assisted rape and assaults were on the rise.

    Police forces across the country were gearing themselves up for a tough night. The Metropolitan police said it had been planning its New Year's Eve operation all year and 3,600 police officers would be on duty in London keeping an eye on revellers. In Manchester, the police advised people struggling to get a taxi home not to "night-hike" and be tempted to get into unsafe and unlicensed taxis.

    The tactics of some cities seem to be to hold low-key public events. There will be a fireworks display at midnight in Birmingham, but the council is not providing a place to view them from, while Leeds is launching its fireworks at teatime.

    Liverpool's status as European capital of culture is being marked in an understated way at the Anglican cathedral, where the rarely heard 14.5-tonne Great George bell will be rung at midnight.

    If public authorities are reluctant to stage big events, the gap is being plugged by privately organised events. Huge party nights spilling out into various venues are being organised by the likes of the Custard Factory in Birmingham and the Warehouse Project in Manchester.

    But, as ever, Edinburgh, Glasgow and London will hold the biggest organised celebrations.

    Though Edinburgh's reputation as the best place in the world to see in the new year may have taken a knock in recent years, its main Hogmanay events are sold out. Kasabian and Idlewild are headlining its Concert in the Gardens, while at Glasgow's George Square, the View and Amy Macdonald are starring in a sellout concert.

    Up to 400,000 people are expected to pack into central London. A 10-minute firework display at the London Eye will follow the midnight chimes of Big Ben. The main gathering points - along the Embankment, and in Trafalgar Square, Leicester Square and the Strand - are likely to be full by 11pm.

    One more piece of gloomy news: psychologists from the University of Hertfordshire say that barely one in 10 people will stick to their new year resolutions.

    In a study, three-quarters of those who said they would quit smoking this time last year lit up again, while just 28% of dieters succeeded in losing weight. At the start of the year-long study more than half of those interviewed said they were confident of success. But by the end of the year just 12% had achieved their goals.

    Happy New Year

  2. Mesmerist

    Mesmerist Well-Known Member

    Guardian readers don`t generally look on the bright side do they...

    happy new year indeed

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