St Albans and Harpenden going out with a bang for firework displays

PUBLISHED: 11:55 05 November 2010 | UPDATED: 12:42 05 November 2010

Guy Fawkes at allotments

Guy Fawkes at allotments

Archant

THE SKIES of St Albans will be lit up on Saturday night when the Abbey’s charity firework spectacular gets underway at Verulamium Park.

The Abbey has been organising the display with the help of a team of volunteers for over 20 years and during that time it has raised half a million pounds for local and national charities.

But the main reason it was held in the first place was because of the need to reduce firework accidents at this time of the year.

Spectators

Every year the display attracts some 20,000 people into the park and on Saturday the gates open from 6pm for a 7.30pm start.

Although there is some parking around the site, spectators are urged to leave their cars elsewhere and walk to the display, getting into watch at one of the entrance points – Westminster Lodge, King Harry Lane down The Causeway, the Fighting Cocks at Abbey Mill Lane, Verulamium Museum or St Michael’s Village.

The 25-minute display is one of the largest in South East England and costs around £20,000 to stage. There is an associated sound system and professional catering and the display is set up by Fantastic Fireworks, now one of the leading UK providers which was originally set up in Redbourn.

A funfair is in operation on the front meadow of Westminster Lodge.

Sparklers are no longer sold at the display following feedback from local residents and especially dog walkers. In previous years up to 5,000 sparklers were sold but it always proved a challenge the following morning to retrieve them all.

Admission to Saturday’s display, which will benefit the Cystic Fibrosis Trust and local charities, is £5 per adult, £2 per child and £10 for a family tickets. Tickets can be purchased in advance at the Alban Arena or by calling the box office on 01727 844488.

n Harpenden allotment holders will be marking Guy Fawkes night in style down at Piggottshill tomorrow night.

Although it might appear to be a quiet time at the allotments, all the cuttings and waste wood are being collected for the annual bonfire evening.

A guy has been constructed and he will be sitting on the top of the fire which will be lit at 5.30pm for all to enjoy, especially the children.

The idea is to keep warm around the fire and watch everyone else’s fireworks around the town.

Potatoes and sausages wrapped in foil will be put in the embers to provide a hot snack later washed down with home-made wine made from the vines growing on the site.


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