Friday, 4 November 2011

What a bright spark

Below is my “Big Day Out” column from the Saturday, October 29, 2011, Swansea edition of the South Wales Evening Post.

What a bright spark
A big day out!
RICHARD THOMAS heads to the Sparks In The Dark fireworks display in Swansea.

WHY? Sparks In The Dark is Swansea's largest fireworks display. Thousands of people turn up to enjoy the annual fireworks extravaganza at St Helen's Rugby Ground in Swansea every year. The event also includes a large circus skills workshop, where peope have the opportunity to have a go at juggling, stilt-walking and unicycling.
WHAT’S THE BUZZ? Historically November 5 is associated with fireworks and the famous Gunpowder Plot to blow up Parliament on that day in 1605. But this year Swansea Council is throwing tradition on the bonfire by holding its annual Sparks in the Dark fireworks display at St Helen’s Rugby and Cricket Ground on Friday November 4 instead. The decision to bring the fireworks display forward by 24 hours was made in order to avoid any conflict with the Ospreys versus Scarlets rugby match taking place at the Liberty Stadium on Saturday November 5.
ANY HISTORY? On November 5, 1605, Guy Fawkes, a member of the Gunpowder Plot, was caught guarding explosives placed beneath the House of Lords and arrested. Celebrating the fact that King James I had survived the attempt on his life, people lit bonfires around London, and months later the introduction of the Observance of 5th November Act enforced an annual public day of thanksgiving for the plot's failure.
WHAT TO TAKE? Advanced tickets are priced at £15 for families (2 adults and up to 3 children), £4.50 standard, £3.50 concessions and £3 Passport to Leisure. Tickets purchased on the night are £20 for families (2 adults and up to 3 children), £5.50 standard, £4.50 concessions and £3.50 Passport to Leisure. Accompanied Under 3s go free. Candy floss, hotdogs, burgers as well as glow sticks and other glow in the dark toys will all be available to buy on the night.
LOOK OUT FOR? The show will see Swansea Bay light up with a spectacular fireworks display and The Wave and Swansea Sound will be on stage with live music, special guests and entertainment throughout the night. Fire jugglers and children's entertainers will also be at St Helen's to provide pre-fireworks fun on the night.
WHEN TO GO? Gates for fireworks extravaganza open on Friday November 4 at 5.30pm with entertainment starting at 6pm. The evening will finish with a spectacular fireworks display choreographed to music at 7.30pm.
TELL ME MORE: The fireworks display will be held at St Helen's Rugby and Cricket Ground in Swansea. For sat nav users the address and postcode is: 1 Bryn Road, Brynmill, Swansea, SA2 0AR. Tickets can be purchased online at or by calling Swansea Tourist Information Centre on 01792 468321. Alternatively, tickets can be purchased in person from a number of venues including Swansea Tourist Information Centre, Mumbles Tourist Information Centre, Swansea Civic Centre and any Active Swansea Leisure Centre. Tickets can also be purchased in person on the night on the gates at St Helen's Ground.

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