Page last updated at 11:19 GMT, Friday, 6 November 2009

Town's bonfire night 'a success'

Lewes bonfire procession

The celebrations were hailed a success by police

The annual bonfire celebrations held in the East Sussex town of Lewes have been hailed a success by police despite their initial concerns over safety.

Thousands of people watched as the effigies were paraded through the narrow streets before being burned.

Roads were closed, while parking and trains were restricted to keep crowds at a "safe and comfortable" level.

Eleven arrests were made, mostly for assaults or drunken behaviour, and 10 people needed hospital treatment.

The event is the largest annual policing operation in East Sussex, and the force deployed more than 400 police officers this year.

'Great success'

Six of the town's seven bonfire societies staged processions followed by a bonfire with fireworks at sites throughout the town.

Sussex Police said about 16,000 people travelled into Lewes by train and officers were joined by British Transport Police to help manage the crowds and minimise the risk of injuries and damage to property.

South East Coast Ambulance Service and St John Ambulance dealt with more than 100 individuals, while East Sussex Fire and Rescue dealt with a couple of small-scale bonfire related incidents.

Ch Supt Robin Smith said overall, the event was "a great success".

"We have worked hard, over many months, with our partners and emergency services colleagues to ensure the community enjoys the celebrations in a safe and comfortable environment," he said.



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