The news comes a swathe of flood warning across Sussex following consistent heavy rains throughout the afternoon. Climping has been particularly affected, with serious floods reported after the sea wall collapsed under rough seas.
Organisers added that, thanks to the immense cost and organisational challenge of rescheduling the event, the parade and fireworks will not go ahead at all this year. They will, however, light the bonfire when the fire brigade gives the green light.
"Needless to say we are all devastated and are sorry for any inconvenience caused,” a bonfire society spokesperson said, praising all those who gave up their time to organise a well-loved and historic community event.
The decision to finally cancel was much-deliberated by bonfire society staff. As of 7.30am today, the team was holding out hope for the event, despite news of the wind and rain, and had to cancel just hours before this evening’s start time.
It comes as a real blow to the community. Not only is the bonfire a much-anticipated local event, it costs a lot of time and money to run, with a team of dedicated volunteers working hard to organise the parade, design the bonfire and put the things in motion to make the ambitious parade a yearly reality. The cost of this year’s event was £30,000, much of which came from the bonfire’s own fundraising efforts, an online fundraiser and eager local sponsors.