WITH Bonfire Night now upon us, I am reminded of almost 50 years ago when my wife Carol was a member of my daughter’s school fundraising committee and they decided that a fireworks display would be a good earner.

It was all hands to the pump that evening with the menfolk doing the fireworks and the ladies preparing food for after the event.

They needed a big bin for keeping the £300 worth of fireworks in – £300 was a lot of money in those days when you could buy a house for a grand!

I got them a big steel bin on loan from Durham university where I worked.

The display was to take place in the school yard which was packed with parents and kids. About a tenner’s worth of fireworks had been let off when all hell broke loose as a spark got into the big bin. One of the parents tipped the bin over onto the tarmacked yard and the whole lot went off at once.

It was total mayhem with rockets shooting across the yard and wedging under temporary classroom buildings. It was a miracle that no one died or that there was not a major fire.

There was lots of crying and a few laddered nylons and scorched coats, but no real harm done.

The ladies committee gave all their food away that evening!

Malcolm Rolling, Carrville.