New Year’s Eve revellers preparing to attend the December 31st evening edition of the Liverpool International Horse Show were dismayed to learn the event had to be cancelled due to a nearby fire.

The blaze consumed a multi-storey car park close to The Echo Arena where the prestigious event was due to take place. It is reported that 1,600 vehicles were destroyed, leaving hundreds of people stranded in the area. Thankfully, there were no human or horse injuries.

Refunds are being issued for ticket purchases. More information can be found here.

Liverpool International Horse Show president, Nina Barbour, made the following statement:

“I would like to express my immense thanks and gratitude to the emergency services, the Echo Arena staff, riders, grooms and support staff, the general public and the City of Liverpool following Sunday night’s events.

“The understanding of everybody who were preparing to celebrate New Years’ Eve and were left in Liverpool with no transport was nothing short of remarkable, and the offers of help and support from people – they ran into the hundreds – for anyone who needed assistance will never be forgotten.

“It was with considerable regret that last night’s final session of the show had to be cancelled due to a serious fire in a multi-storey car park near to the Echo Arena, and on advice from the emergency services, who worked tirelessly all night to contain and extinguish the fire.

“My thoughts are also with those who have lost their vehicles and possessions as a result of the fire.

“All people and horses are safe and secure, and I thank spectators, riders and support teams for their understanding and co-operation during what was a difficult situation.

“I am very proud of our own teams who pulled together in the most demanding of circumstances, and managed to quickly and calmly evacuate all horses from the venue in a safe and controlled manner.

“We have worked very closely with the Echo Arena team over the last three years – their support and hard work has been integral to the event’s success to date, and our thoughts are with them, and the city of Liverpool.

“We are not going to let go of what we achieved in the first five sessions of the show, and we will be back to do it again next December.”