Sponsors’ cash brings Blackheath fireworks back with a bang

Back from my travels, and it’s good to have something to look forward to. Remember this?

Thankfully, that wasn’t footage of the last ever Blackheath fireworks display, because it’s back. Forget the heatwave, cast your mind forward 33 days to Saturday 5 November at 8pm, when the skies over Blackheath will light up once again.

Last year’s fireworks were hit by a sudden budget shortfall when Greenwich Council pulled its £36,000 share of the funding for an event right on its border, preferring to put the cash towards a private mayoral booze-up and the “Greenwich Festivals” programme, while pleading poverty at the same time.

Lewisham ended up making up £25,000 of the shortfall through corporate sponsorship and public donations.

Since then, Greenwich has permanently cut funding for the event, although it still managed to find an extra £100,000 for the Greenwich and Docklands International Festival down some town hall sofa earlier this year.

Thankfully for local pyromaniacs, Lewisham Council has decided to keep the event going, and has secured sponsorship from the Clarendon Hotel and housing association L&Q to make sure this year’s goes with a bang. I’m sure if you run a local business and want to be associated with something which attracts 100,000 people each year, Lewisham won’t be turning you away, while there’ll be a public collection on the night.

There’s no word yet on whether Lewisham will accept old copies of Greenwich Time as donations from this side of the border. Crunched up, they make excellent fire-lighting material. If anyone wants to start a collection, maybe we can have a ceremonial burn-up…


  1. A part of me feels Greenwich is not being public spirited by refusing to sponsor the fireworks. However, the fact that they can go ahead without a contribution from the council justifies their decision and allows them to spend that cash in areas that can’t attract corporate sponsorship.
    We can only hope that the cash isn’t going to be used to fund a party for the mayor!

  2. I think it will be used to fund a mayor’s party – the fireworks cash came from the same council department which funds the mayor-making.

    Worth pointing out that it’s Lewisham doing the legwork to fund the shortfall from Greenwich pulling out – Lewisham taxpayers are still forking out too.

    Wonder how much Greenwich could have raised from its pals at, say, Berkeley Homes?

  3. I read about this on the Lewisham Council site the other week and am very pleased to see Lewisham are keeping the event up.

    As a Greenwich council tax payer I promise to put my hand in my pocket and donate as a thank you to my fellow Lewisham council tax payers!

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