‘You can’t put a price on family time’ - readers defend South Shields fireworks display

South Tyneside Fireworks Display at Sandhaven Beach.
South Tyneside Fireworks Display at Sandhaven Beach.

Gazette readers have jumped to the defence of the borough’s annual fireworks display.

On our letters page on Friday, Ken Johnson questioned how South Tyneside Council could justify the November 5 bash while it is trying to claw back £2m in rent arrears owed by 7,000 of its 18,000 local authority households.

He didn’t have long to wait for an answer.

There were plenty of readers willing to use our Facebook page to support the display.

Graham Scaife wrote: “Before you make a judgement on whether it’s wasted money or not you have to look at the cost of the fireworks and compare it to the revenue generated to the district by things like car parking charges, increased revenue for the fair and food sales.

“Let us see the outgoings and the incomings before deciding. Personally, I imagine it brings in more money than it costs otherwise any sensible organiser would have pulled the plug by now.

“Chances are it actually costs the tax payer very little if anything at all.”

Joe Hewson added: “I don’t think they should axe it. It may be the last bit of entertainment families on a low income can actually have in our local area to enjoy together.”

Dawn Morgan said: “Even if the council did pay for it, its nice to see parents out spending time with their children, instead of children being on laptops and parents on their phones or watching TV.”

Catherine Browne wrote: “Keep the fireworks. They brings people into the town who spend money in our local businesses.

“They are well organised displays which are safe. It saves people from buying there own and possible accidents occurring.”

Kitty Winter added: “Each year passes, but even though my kids are adults now, we still go down every year. It’s a family tradition and we come home to jackets, chilli and hotdogs.

“You can’t put a price on family time. Long may it continue

Mark Flett is thinking big.

He wrote: “Think differently. Spend more on a huge fireworks celebration - with live music and hot food.

“Charge people to get in. All outlays covered, plus a bit for council projects and charities.”

Martin Anthony thanks that is happening already.

He wrote: “They probably get the money back from parking alone around the area. Every car park was full at £2 a hour.”

Valerie Nichol also says the November 5 show should not be axed.

She wrote: “No. It is shared cost with the fair and it brings money into the town,”