The hopes and fears of the nation have reached new heights ahead of England’s semi-final clash with Croatia.

Football fans in Dorset are putting their faith in Gareth Southgate’s side to take the Three Lions to their first World Cup final since 1966.

England had not reached the final four of the World Cup in 28 years, but are now just two games away from winning only their second major title.

After watching England beat Colombia and Sweden in the knock-out rounds, the nation has been swept up in a newfound football mania.

Most residents are confident that the Three Lions will beat Croatia and move one step closer to a shot at silverware.

After the win against Sweden, Bridport experienced a party atmosphere as thousands flooded into the streets.

Similar numbers are expected after tonight’s game and extra police patrols have been organised.

Superintendent Mike Rogers, of the Alliance Operations Department, said: “Like all areas of the country we have experienced increasing numbers of jubilant football fans in our towns and local communities as a result of England’s continued success at the World Cup.

“The overwhelming majority of these celebrations have been good-natured, for which we are grateful, and we have taken a friendly, pro-active approach in response.

“Unfortunately there is a very small minority of fans whose behaviour is not what the general public would wish for and that is effecting other people.

“For Wednesday evening we will be putting in a proportionate policing response and we are continuing to work very closely with our partner agencies and licensed premises so that we can jointly make our response effective and focussed around public safety.”

Here are some of the places where you can watch the game tonight:

  • Broadwindsor Commrades Hall
  • White Lion, Bridport
  • Crown Inn, Bridport
  • Martin's Bar and Restaurant, Highlands End Holiday Park
  • Tiger Inn, Bridport
  • The Greyhound, Bridport

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