I guess everybody knew that Nigel Baynes was so proud of the big field, and he was always delighted to put on the big bonfire night, every year without fail on the eponymous date: remember, remember, the 5th of November.
There weren’t always press releases to herald the event, but this one made it into the archive Nigel maintained so faithfully. I’m intrigued to see that AVOOSC (that’s the Allen Valleys Out Of School Club to you and me) played a big part in the fire this year. And also that hand sparklers were very much a part of the fun yet again; that wouldn’t pass the Health and Safety committee any longer.
But I was sure there would be a photo, somewhere, of Peter Flanagan’s wonderful painting, though I cannot find it anywhere. I’m not sure, either, who the successful bidder actually was. Perhaps it was Nigel himself?!
Anyway, I did manage to find a 2006 email from Nigel which entails just some of the huge organising that always accompanied the bonfire event, and I thought it might be worthwhile to paste the list in below, just to refresh in our minds the amount of work we Lions put in to make this event sing:
Meet at 10am on Saturday, there’s lots to do!
This week’s weather has helped the field a little bit but still very squidgy underfoot. Could I ask therefore, that we restrict vehicular traffic to 4WD with trailers (driven with care) and that the handler only makes one trip across the field for turf purposes and is not used for the actual building. Thanks.
* Turf Stripping, Rolling & Stacking on to trailer
* Pallets for Fire Base, Placing of Round Bale & Building of Tunnel.
* Transport of ex-auction Furniture from Green Shed to Fire Site, Likewise with other builders waste which has been dumped around B.E.
* Kitchen Area to be organised – Fran to advise of her requirements (ie gas rings bbq’s electric points etc)
* Lighting: including colouresd strings and halogens for gates, raffle, food etc.
* Tables etc to be sited for above
* Safety Barriers and Wheelie Bins to be sited.
* Other safety items to be considered – Dave H to advise.
* Fireworks area to be prepared
For information: The local Fire Crew will be attending from about 6.30, they will park outside the front of B.E. and mingle amongst the people. After the event they will stand by the Fire Appliance and hand out freebies to the children and information leaflets to the adults.
I have probably missed stuff but this list gives some idea of what’s required. I think the expression is: All hands on deck!
It would be helpful if we could also collect the white tables and chairs from Deneholme this week end. If it’s a fine night on Sunday they may even be used outside the food court.
But what Nigel’s list does not include is the considerable effort involved in clearing up, after the event! The raking of the embers, the trawling through the smoking residue with the wheeled magnet to collect nails, and finally the replacement of the turves so that the field would soon be as it was before the conflagration. Lots of heavy work, for sure.