ARBROATH’S fireworks display, one of the most popular events on the annual calendar, is under new management!
For the past five years it has been organised by Councillor David Fairweather and a stalwart band of helpers and fund-raisers.
However, following a meeting last week, organisation of the event will now be taken over by a sub-committee of the Royal Burgh of Arbroath Community Council.
Councillor Fairweather says he feels that it is time to stand aside and pass the reigns over to another community spirited group to organise the event. But he will continue to help and advise the community council committee.
Community council spokesman Ian Watson commented: “Last Tuesday, a sub-committee met with Councillor Fairweather to discuss in detail the mechanics of organising such an important community annual event.
“The discussions that took place were helpful with Councillor Fairweather stating that he would be willing to assist the community council should they decide to take over the running of the display.
“A vote was taken and all members of the sub group voted in favour of organising the fireworks display with immediate effect.”
Mr Watson revealed that concerns were raised that the period of time the community council have to organise the event is only four months, with the sum needed likely to be in excess of £6,000. And with only a few hundred pounds in the account at present, the community council feels it is only fair to stress that such an event can not be possible without the support of local businesses and local people willing to give a small donation towards the costs.
Mr Watson continued: “The members of the sub-committee are sifting through all of the available funding agencies that exist for events such as the fireworks display and Angus Council community support team is being very supportive.
“In the next few weeks local businesses will be receiving e-mails, letters and ‘phone calls asking them to pledge their support with a donation. The community council will publicly acknowledge all who support the event.”
He continued: “There are a number of local community organisations already pledging their support and we are now waiting on the finer details to be publicly released. We are mindful that the Arbroath trades holiday fortnight is looming but time is really is short for us.
“We cannot stress strongly enough just how important it is that we manage to secure the funding required in order for us to appoint all the organisations and agencies that it takes to put this event together with all involved needing a certain amount of notice before the event date of Monday, November 5.
“However we will through the courtesy of the local press keep the public informed of our progress with an announcement of a donation site to be available soon.”
Councillor Fairweather said that first and foremost he would like to thank the local branch of the RNLI, his former council colleague Peter Nield and everyone else who had contributed to the success of the firework display over the past five years.
He went on: “A lot of people thought that the display was an Angus Council event, but it was not. I have taken all the risks over the last five years. After the local elections I thought that someone else should have the opportunity to take over, so I e-mailed the SNP administration. They spoke with the community council, the end result being a very productive meeting last Tuesday.”
Councillor Fairweather stressed that he is happy to continue to take part in an advisory capacity and will also help with the fund-raising.