A Bristol-based firework company designed a spectacular display fired from the Clifton Suspension Bridge to celebrate the Olympic torch coming to the city.
Skyburst the Firework Co. with bases in Upper Langford and Bedminster, fired 240 red, white and blue streamer cannons from the iconic bridge as Rebecca Pantaney and Tom Baker ran with the torch, making for impressive viewing.
The uniquely designed show was created using Skyburst’s very own software and all the products were made especially for the event.
In addition to 240 coloured streamers, the company used 276 red, white and blue stage mines which are magnesium based and therefore bright enough to be seen in daylight. There were also four concussion cannons which let off loud bangs as the torch reached various points of the bridge.
Skyburst managing director Alan Christie said: “It is absolutely fantastic to be involved in something of this magnitude. The Olympic torch relay is one of the most talked about events of this year so we wanted to be able to give a show Bristol could be proud of as we heard of the great things other cities were doing.
“We have used £7,500 worth of materials for this display and each of the 520 individual products were made-to-order by a well-known UK manufacturer.
“The materials we used are the best in Europe and the equipment had to be specially made because of the intricacies of firing from the bridge. We did several site visits and a couple of ‘Blue Peter’ trial runs to make sure everything worked.
“The idea of the display was so that people watching the bridge from afar could see how far along the torch was even though the runner would not be visible. The explosions and streamers marked the way all along the route, creating a red, white and blue path across our famous landmark.
“I really hope this display will be remembered for years to come and I hope we’ve given Bristol an Olympic Torch relay to be proud of.”
Skyburst and the 17 employees working on the display worked closely with the city council, local police forces and the bridge master to ensure the relay went with a bang and put Bristol on the Olympic map.
The spectacular display ended with an explosion of ‘Flutter-fetti’ which left a cloud of gold as the torch emerged from the tower at the end of the bridge and entered Clifton.
Organiser Tony Miles from the Clifton Village Traders Association said: "I'm very proud to be part of lighting up the most iconic bridge in the world, I think it was a spectacle for Clifton and for Bristol. This has been two and a half months in planning behind secret doors; we kept it quiet right up to about half an hour before. I heard that the Olympic torch was coming to Clifton but the city council couldn't make it work; they couldn't get the funding. I went to Skyburst the Firework Co. who are mates of mine and they told me how much they wanted for the fireworks, they've given their services for nothing."
Skyburst has a history of providing professional firework displays which dates back over 30 years. Based in the South West but operating across the whole of the UK, Skyburst has delivered major displays including the Brixham Festival, Bridgewater Carnival, the Tall Ship Race and the Bristol Balloon Fiesta for the past 16 years.