Ely Fireworks – November 10, 2012
By elypeople | Sunday, October 14, 2012, 11:35
Get set for an explosion of noise as the Ely fireworks display returns to the city to celebrate bonfire night on Saturday November 10, 2012.
Ely Fireworks Display lights up the Cathedral. Picture by Philip Laver
One of the most dramatic settings for a fireworks display in the country, this annual city event, staged each year in Ely's Cherry Hill Park, is a thrilling show of colour and noise set against the backdrop of the famous Ely Cathedral.
"There is no finer location for a firework display," says Des Matthewson, a member of the organising committee. "Ely Park is a natural auditorium which allows great views of the fireworks. The backdrop of the Cathedral, with the illuminated Octagon, is breathtaking. When the smoke drifts across the field there is a mystical feel about the park and I don't believe this can be replicated elsewhere."
One of the most exciting events to be held annually in the city, the display has been a fixture in the Ely calendar since members of Ely & District Round Table first staged it in 1974.
"It came about following a number of incidents involving injuries to children using fireworks," says Matthewson. "Round Table members decided to put on a display and canvassed the shops in Ely that at that time sold fireworks – they were asked if they would stop selling them in return for a display."
The Round Table organised the event for many years but after the local branch was wound up in April 2008, former members created a new charitable company, Ely XT, to continue running the display and the profits from the events are all ploughed back into local community.
What Ely TX fear the most each year is bad weather, but attendance has rarely been affected. "Surprisingly we have only had two seriously wet nights in the last 25 years and even then we managed to raise a little money for the local community," says Matthewson. "The people of Ely are fairly resilient to the wind and rain!"
This year Ely fireworks display is staged on Saturday November 10 in Ely Park. Gates open at 5.30pm, with the bonfire being lit at 6.15pm and the fireworks being set off at 6.45pm. Tickets are available from Specsavers, Ely Tourist Board, the Ely Weekly News office and the David Baldock Dental Surgery. They are also available from Lloyds TSB in Soham. Tickets are priced at £3.00 for an adult and £1.50 for a child. You can also buy tickets on the gate at £4.00 for an adult and £2.00 for a child.
This interview is adapted from last year's Ely People story on the history of Ely Fireworks. Read last year's full interview by clicking on the link below...