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8:45pm on Saturday, 4th November, 2017:

Please to Remember


We went to see the fireworks in Colchester this evening. Normally, the big display is on the fifth of November come what may, but this year for some inexplicable reason they held it a day earlier. In another change, tickets could be bought online so everyone had to have a QR code scanned when they arrived; this led to 15-minute queues that were only released when they ticket-takers realised no-one would be able to get in on time if they stuck to the plan, so began letting us in without checking tickets at all.

Other things remained the same. The compere played the same music as last year, which I can confidently say even though I wasn't there last year because he plays the same music every year. As usual, the start was delayed to give away free passes to some event run by some sponsor no-one has ever heard of. The guy was carried down to the bonfire, placed atop it and set fire to (to the music "Come on Baby, Light my Fire"). After the fire died down (it's just some branches leaning against a stack of old wooden pallets), the fireworks began.

Also as usual, the music choice was dreadful and seemed to have no theme. It did appear to be synchronised with the fireworks, but not to the extent that it was actually saying anything. Fortunately, the fireworks themselves were great! There were some new combinations and multi-part ones that I quite liked, plus some old favourites. There seemed to be an excess of some I wasn't all that keen on, though, as they weren't exactly subtle: just bright globs of light in not very appealing colours that didn't really go with each other.
The final sequence was absolutely stunning, though! The sky was full of silver with red flecks, covering us like a sheet. It was very memorable, and worth the price of entry on its own.

As for what the price of entry was, well this time round they set it at £9. We were told by the compere that there were 10,000 people in the audience and that £14,000 of fireworks would be going up. I know it's a charity do, but a profit of 600% seems a little excessive.

Still, I'll be there next year if I'm in Colchester. I love fireworks!

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Copyright © 2017 Richard Bartle (richard@mud.co.uk).