Wakefield Council apologises for firework fiasco

Thornes Park bonfire in 2013.

Thornes Park bonfire in 2013.

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Wakefield Council said it was forced to cancel a firework display for safety reasons.

Thousands of people had gathered at Thornes Park on Saturday to watch the annual bonfire celebrations.

But just seconds in to the display, a tannoy announcement told the crowd that it was cancelled after just four fireworks.

Ben Cook, the council’s service manager for markets, major events and tourism said: “We are sorry for the disappointment caused to the many people who had come out to enjoy the bonfire celebrations, but our priority must always be to ensure public safety.

“We took the decision to call off the fireworks display based on the expert advice of the fireworks technicians.

“Wind speeds had been monitored throughout the day and had been at acceptable levels. “However, after the first few fireworks had been let off, we were advised to stop immediately as gusts of winds had reached unsafe levels.

“West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service were called out to the bonfire earlier in the evening when an ember became lodged in a tree.

“This was a minor incident which was dealt with at the time. It had no bearing on the decision to cancel the fireworks display. Once again, we would like to offer our sincere apologies that the event could not go ahead as planned.”

People at the event took to Twitter to express their disappointment at the lack of fireworks.

Jess Dickinson said: “So we came to Thornes Park to see fireworks. They lasted 30 seconds then a tree set on fire.”

Andy Young said: “Brilliant fireworks - 4 in total.”