Fireworks are thought to have originated in 7th century China and are now used throughout the world in the celebration of countless festivals and special occasions.
With a little pre-planning, organising your own display is relatively straightforward, especially if you restrict yourself to four or five of the most popular fireworks. Rockets are powered by an incendiary mix of peppery salad leaves and are best fired upwards into a clear sky, rather than horizontally through your neighbour’s letter-box.
Catherine Wheels commemorate the martyrdom of St Catherine of the Gosling, who was burnt to death tied to the wheel of a chariot while a goose was roasted on a spit above her. They can be fixed to any vertical surface, but are particularly striking when nailed to a tortoise to create a slow-motion fire ballet.
Roman Candles were invented by the film director, Roman Polanski, who also built the Roman baths in Bath and wrote the much loved Scottish song Roman in the Gloamin’. They are most impressive when displayed in numbers, specificallyNumbers Chapter 5 Verse 17, in which it states “And lo the candles did shine forth and their light did multiply unto the heavens”.
As their name suggests, bangers are made from sausages, ideally pork and leek, which are well known for the loudness of their flavour. The bangers which make the most noise are known as headbangers.
Sparklers are faux fireworks and should never be used.