Fireworks ban no-brainer

Last updated 12:05 18/11/2013

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I'm one of those people who can't understand why the Government still allows people to waste their money celebrating a failed attempt to blow up the Houses of Parliament in London more than 400 years ago.

Everything about it is wrong.

I'm not completely against fireworks; I just prefer them in the right place at the right time and ignited by the right people.

The best time is major celebrations like New Year's Eve.

And I will accept that community events like the Lights Over Marlborough fundraiser in Blenheim on Saturday night also fall into my approved category.

That event gets my vote on two counts. It's a fundraiser for Whitney Street School, so is a good cause. And it gets lots of people together for a decent display.

I got excited about fireworks when I was a kid, and sort of understood the significance of the event because of history lessons at school. Those were the days when you could buy Tom Thumb crackers (that were mostly used to blow up letterboxes and terrorise cats) and sky rockets.

The turning point was at uni in Dunedin when the male occupants of one hall of residence got their jollies by firing sky rockets from vacuum cleaner pipes at neighbouring halls and surrounding flats. Bloody idiots. That's about when I realised the stupidity of the event and the downright danger of the things.

It took the lawmakers a long time to catch up with my thinking, but they got there eventually, banning crackers and sky rockets, then limiting sales to over-18s and for only a couple of days a year.

So why don't they just ban them completely and put them in the hands of the people who can make a really good display for everyone to enjoy? That show in Blenheim on Saturday night was magnificent. It didn't celebrate anything, but was a chance for people to get together to enjoy an event and watch a great show.

We didn't go to the showgrounds, but could see some of the display from home. It sounded like world war III had broken out, but it didn't last too long.

The only thing better is the Picton show on New Years Eve - where the lights are reflected in the water and there really is something to celebrate.

Well done to Whitney Street School for another excellent event.

The organisers do this properly. They have access to buy the things that really make an impressive boom and have all the safely arrangements in place.

Better one big show than the dozens of little bursts of mayhem going off in the neighbourhood during the past couple of weeks.

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- The Marlborough Express

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