Town cancels Jubilee beacon lighting over safety fears

Robert Smith, harbourmaster in Wells has expressed his disappointment after cancelling the Jubilee beacon event on June 2

Robert Smith, harbourmaster in Wells has expressed his disappointment after cancelling the Jubilee beacon event on June 2 - Credit: Ian Burt/Supplied

Wells has been forced to cancel its Jubilee beacon lighting ceremony at the last minute, over fears it could set alight boats moored in the harbour.

The beacon is set on marshland opposite the town quay and was to have been ignited tonight, at the same moment that hundreds of others are due to be lit across the country.

But the Port of Wells has announced the ceremony will not go ahead, because officials fear that a southeasterly wind could blow embers towards vessels moored nearby.

Robert Smith, the harbour master, said the community might try to light the beacon over the weekend, if conditions allow.

Wells Harbour master Robert Smith. Picture: Ian Burt

Wells Harbour master Robert Smith. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt

“The beacon light is not worth the risk with all these travelling boats sitting in the harbour,” he said.

“The flying embers would just blow across the harbour towards the visiting vessels.

“There are hundreds of thousands of pounds worth of boats in the harbour right now.

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“It is better to be safe than sorry, I’m as disappointed as anyone, but safety has to come first.”

The plans were cancelled before the team loaded the brazier.

A full list of Jubilee beacon events can be found here