20th August 2018
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Guy Fawkes fireworks display in town fizzles out because of shortage of volunteers

4 comments, , by , in News

There will be no fireworks display at Clickimin next week owing to a shortage of volunteers to help organise the event that has been run for years by Islesburgh Pyrotechnic Display Club.

Chairwoman Nancy Hunter told The Shetland Times that the club mem­bers were bitterly disappointed not to stage the show which has been enjoyed by thousands since it moved to Clickimin from the Gilbertson Park.

Mrs Hunter said that it had been an increasing struggle in recent years to find people to organise the event and provide stewarding which has been undertaken on an entirely voluntary basis.

She said: “We’d just like to emphasise how really grateful we are to the volunteers, Sonia Inkster, John Bulter and Andrew Anderson and those on the crew who have done an awful lot of organisation.”

Historically, the many groups that were associated with Islesburgh were on hand to provide a good number of volunteers each, but as these had dwindled in number, it had been harder and harder to staff the event.

The pyrotechnic club firework crew will continue to handle the technical aspects of events includ­ing fireworks at Sandwick Social Club on Tuesday and at the Ness on Saturday. She added that the club would be happy to stage the Ler­wick event again if another group could step in to undertake the organisational chores.

Because of the scale of the Lerwick display, it has required the involvement of dozens of people including stewards, the Red Cross and emergency services.

Mrs Hunter said: “In previous years we have done things like going on the radio to try and get a separate committee set up to organise it, but we never managed to get enough people to do that. We just will not be able to have a show this year and we would love to be able to have it.”

She added that it was unlikely there would now be any organised fireworks in Lerwick before Christmas.

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About Peter Johnson

Reporter for The Shetland Times. I have also worked as an employed and freelance reporter and editor for a variety of print and broadcast media outlets and as as a freelance photographer and film maker/cameraman. In addition to journalism, I have experience in construction, oil analysis, aquaculture, fisheries, the health service and oral history.

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4 comments

  1. Robert Duncan

    This is a real shame. I wish I had known earlier they were struggling so badly as I would have offered to pitch in, as I’m sure would many others. I know it’s not as simple as that to get the message out – and therefore offer all the more credit to those who do give their time unprompted – but I can’t say I’ve seen any request for volunteers.

    Reply
  2. David Spence

    I concur Robert. It is a terrible shame that the fantastic fireworks display done by Islesburgh Community Centre cannot happen this year due to lack of volunteers.

    I also agree that there could have been greater advertising for volunteers through the radio or the paper………like you Robert, I was totally unaware that there was such a crisis regarding this fantastic event.

    I just hope for next year this problem is resolved, and for everybody to enjoy the splendid display Islesburgh Community Centre has always done.

    Reply
  3. fraser cluness

    just to let you know the fireworks is not done by ‘Islesburgh Community Centre’.

    Origonaily the fireworks was started and ran for many years by the Islesburgh Trust. The boys/girls that were the actual fireworks crew then set up a stand alown group/club. The trust used the event as a way of collection money for the trust – Islesburgh cc, House and the Garrison Theatre inc the Islesburgh youthclub. The council/charitable trust then closed down the Islesbugh Trust removing the Garrison and some may say the Comunity envolvment in events like these. I worked many a good night at the family event during and after the fireworks in the community centre, its a shame that this kind of events no longer happens. Just because the Word Islesburgh is in a name dosn’t mean its actualy run by ‘Islesburgh’ itself.

    Reply
  4. David Spence

    Thank you Fraser for the information. I stand corrected.

    It is still a shame that the event is not being held this year. I hope, although I am sceptical, that staff, volunteers and above all finances can still be organised for next years event if other factors like SIC cuts does not affect future fireworks displays being held by whatever organisation responsible for such an event?

    Reply

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