Friday, 27 November 2020

Council gives £8,000 to summer display

THE Henley Summer Fireworks are to receive a grant of £8,000 from the town council.

THE Henley Summer Fireworks are to receive a grant of £8,000 from the town council.

The organisers had asked for an unspecified grant towards the cost of the charity display, which is held at Meadows Farm Field, off Marlow Road, on the Saturday night of Henley Royal Regatta.

The 12-minute display costs £1,000 per minute as the fireworks have to reach a height of 800ft to be seen throughout the regatta site.

Billy Pinches, who owns Meadows Farm, has organised the display since 2010 with the help of Henley Lions and Lady McAlpine, of Fawley Hill.

Since then it has raised more than £10,000 for charities, which is collected by volunteers on the night.

The cost of the fireworks has been met by donations from local businesses and individuals but before last year’s display organisers said it would be the last in its present form as it had become too costly.

The town council turned down a similar grant request last year but agreed to help fund this year’s display at a meeting of the finance strategy and management committee. Councillor Elizabeth Hodgkin, said: “One of the reasons we didn’t give them the grant last year was we didn’t know if the fireworks would continue.

“I’m very grateful for how Billy Pinches and Lady McAlpine run the event.”

The fireworks display used to be held on regatta land until 2008 when the committee banned it, blaming an increase in anti-social behaviour and damage to its land and equipment. There was no display in 2009.

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