Happy New Year! Enormous firework display lights up central London as UK celebrates 2013 in style


Happy New Year, London! Fantastic firework display on the banks of the Thames lights up the capital's skyline to welcome 2013 in UK
About 250,000 people lined the banks of the Thames to witness the incredible display of pyrotechnics and lightsAround 75,000 partygoers joined in a mass rendition of Auld Lang Syne after the clock struck
midnight in Edinburgh

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Colourful: Thousands of people have lined the banks of the Thames to see the extravagant firework display light up the capital

Colourful: Thousands of people have lined the banks of the Thames to see the extravagant firework display light up the capital

Ambitious: Thousands of people lined the banks of the Thames to witness the incredible display of pyrotechnics and lights

Ambitious: Thousands of people lined the banks of the Thames to witness the incredible display of pyrotechnics and lights

Elaborate: The London Eye is dwarfed by the impressive fireworks

Elaborate: The London Eye is dwarfed by the impressive fireworks

Bright: Fireworks explode around the London Eye during New Year's celebrations in central London

Bright: Fireworks explode around the London Eye during New Year's celebrations in central London

Popular: The banks of the River Thames near Parliament in central London were packed with thousands of happy revellers

Popular: The banks of the River Thames near Parliament in central London were packed with thousands of happy revellers

Attractive: The capital's skyline was transformed during the incredible firework display

Attractive: The capital's skyline was transformed during the incredible firework display

The spectacle in London saw a quarter-of-a-million people gather on the banks of the Thames to watch the 11-minute firework show which followed the traditional counting down of the final seconds by Big Ben.

People cheered as the capital's famous landmarks were bathed in the light of the display,
which included streamers shot out of the London Eye and blazing
rockets launched from the banks of the River Thames.

There were impromptu fireworks displays throughout much of London as
the city remembered a year that saw the success of London 2012, the Queen's diamond
jubilee and the announcement that the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are expecting their first child.

Thousands of revellers partied on the streets of Edinburgh – dubbed the home of Hogmanay – to welcome the new year.

Around 75,000 partygoers counted down the last 10 seconds of 2012 before joining in a mass rendition of Auld Lang Syne after the clock struck midnight in Edinburgh.

The world-famous event saw Scottish rock band Simple Minds headline the Concert in the Gardens, following performances from The View and Bwani Junction.

Celebration: Fireworks light up the London skyline - including the Elizabeth Tower housing Big Ben - just after midnight

Celebration: Fireworks light up the London skyline – including the Elizabeth Tower housing Big Ben – just after midnight

Party: Up and down the country, millions of people have packed into town's and cities to celebrate 2013 following the astonishing success of 2012

Party: Up and down the country, millions of people have packed into town's and cities to celebrate 2013 following the astonishing success of 2012

Busy: Thousands of people packed onto Westminster Bridge to watch the impressive firework show

Busy: Thousands of people packed onto Westminster Bridge to watch the impressive firework show

Lavish: The London Eye is barely noticeable thought the bright firework display

Lavish: The London Eye is barely noticeable through the bright firework display

They were among 14 acts performing
across five stages, including Mercury Prize nominees The Maccabees and
Reverend and the Makers.

Countdown fireworks at 9pm, 10pm and 11pm set the sky alight, with the five-minute midnight display from the ramparts of Edinburgh Castle set to music for the first time.

The tracks played were from bands who have performed at the street party in the past as more than 2,000 firework cues were used, triggering over 17,000 shots from 45 locations.

Partygoers from across the world visited the city to join in the events, which also included a ceilidh with 3,000 people dancing as the bells chimed.
Tickets for the celebrations were bought by those in more than 60 countries, including Australia, Brazil, Japan, Turkey and the US.

Stunning: Fireworks mark the new year during the 2013 Edinburgh Hogmanay celebrations in Scotland

Stunning: Fireworks mark the new year during the 2013 Edinburgh Hogmanay celebrations in Scotland

Happy: Revellers write the number 2013 with sparklers during the Hogmanay street party celebrations in Edinburgh

Happy: Revellers write the number 2013 with sparklers during the Hogmanay street party celebrations in Edinburgh

Beautiful: Fireworks went off earlier this evening over Edinburgh Castle as part of the new year 2013 Edinburgh Hogmanay celebrations

Beautiful: Fireworks went off earlier this evening over Edinburgh Castle as part of the new year 2013 Edinburgh Hogmanay celebrations

Friendly: Kat Parker, left, and Georgia Rochester, right, kiss Sergeant Stevenson, centre, ahead of the new year celebrations in Edinburgh

Friendly: Kat Parker, left, and Georgia Rochester, right, kiss Sergeant Stevenson, centre, ahead of the new year celebrations in Edinburgh

Pete Irvine, artistic director of Edinburgh's Hogmanay, said: 'I think it's going really well this year.

'Last night we had our opening event with a record crowd at the torchlight procession.

'It's really, really busy here tonight – probably busier than we've seen it in some time because the weather is so good.

'There's a moon in the sky, it's actually not cold and it's not raining.

'We've
been very lucky with the weather and I think we are going to be very
lucky with the crowd and all the performances tonight on many stages.'

Gathering: Revellers welcome in the New Year in York, which had been affected by flooding over the festive period

Gathering: Revellers welcome in the New Year in York, which had been affected by flooding over the festive period

Fun: Celebrations were underway in Newcastle city centre long before the bell struck midnight as the Spark drumming band entertained the crowds

Fun: Celebrations were underway in Newcastle city centre long before the bell struck midnight as the Spark drumming band entertained the crowds

Colourful: The band changed colour during their performance, much to the delight of the large Newcastle crowd

Colourful: The band changed colour during their performance, much to the delight of the large Newcastle crowd

Early celebrations got under way in the city dubbed the home of Hogmanay last night with a torchlight parade.

A record crowd estimated at 35,000, including 7,000 torch carriers, were led by the massed pipes and drums and the Up Helly Aa' Vikings from Shetland. The procession made its way through the city streets to the burning of the effigy of a Viking boat and a spectacular Son et Lumiere display on Calton Hill.

Events will also take place on New Year's Day, including sled dog races at Holyrood Park and a triathlon which will see competitors swim 400 metres of the Royal Commonwealth Pool, cycle 11 miles around Arthur's Seat and then run 3.5 miles.

The Loony Dook, the annual dip in the River Forth at South Queensferry, will also take place.