We attended the annual Lark in the Dark evening at Christ the King church a week last Friday.
Despite the weather’s best attempts to spoil the evening it was a good fun, culminating in a fantastic firework display.
It was a great effort by the organisers and it signalled the start of what I call “Bonfire Weeks”.
A strange title, you may think, but I feel it is appropriate.
Firework displays are held as a result of that famous night, November 5, so surely should happen on that date.
At least the Halloween trick or treaters, in the majority, only come out after dark on one particular night.
Fireworks seem to go on for a couple of weeks, and not everybody enjoys them, especially some pets.
However, our dog Daisy doesn’t get upset in the slightest over them.
One year in particular I was walking her when some fireworks were set off.
As I stopped, her reaction was to sit still and watch the streaks of light as they reached for the stars, accompanied by loud cracks and bangs.
I prefer to have a display with family and friends, usually at one or another’s house.
Perhaps it’s the nostalgic pull of when I was a child and we had them at home; looking through the selection in the old biscuit tin, bourbons and custard creams replaced by Roman candles and traffic lights.
I liked going with my parents to the shop to buy a small selection box and sparklers made by Standard, perhaps a couple of rockets too.
I enjoy retreating into the warm after I’ve lit a Wailing Banshee, enjoying a mug of hot soup as the green sparks spit upwards, bathing the grass in an eerie glow.
I’m sure the safety precautions are more prevalent at a display than at home, although sadly accidents can happen anywhere.
A couple of years ago, we had a close call as a neighbour’s display went awry and small rockets came through the trees and hit the roof of the house, falling onto the conservatory.
Daisy still sat there, barely raising an eyebrow!
Further back than that, I recall my grandad being pursued down the garden path by a rogue Catherine Wheel that had torn itself free of a restraining nail!
With the option to buy fireworks from seemingly anywhere it isn’t a surprise that mini-rockets screech through the dark skies of November over a period of weeks.
I wonder if fireworks should only be made available to the public for a shorter period, unless you have a licence for a display, in which case you would be buying display fireworks anyway.
Of course this wouldn’t do much to restrict when the Mega-shot cannon blasts or similarly titled devices were actually lit, but it might help.
By the time you read this, November 5 will have passed but I suspect many of you will still enjoy a display later in the week.
Whether you have a private one, or attend a public display, have a great night and stay safe.
We all prefer oohs, aahs and colourful kaleidoscopes of fireworks to the wails of sirens and flashing blue lights of the emergency services.
Read more from J-P here.