Express & Star

Increased police presence planned to ensure Himley bonfire night goes off without a hitch

Changes including increases to police numbers have been made to ensure that the Himley bonfire night goes off without a hitch.

This year is the second in a row that the event has sold out

The popular event has completely sold out this year, with 22,000 people set to attend the display on Saturday night.

Similar numbers attended last year, with many left angry at the congestion around the park and lack of parking space.

To alleviate the issue, extra police will be enlisted to keep traffic moving, along with multiple travel options including free shuttle buses and a new park and ride service.

Councillor Shaun Keasey, cabinet member responsible for commercial events, said: "We recognise there were issues last year with people getting on and off the site so we have made some changes.

"We will have an increased police presence this year to help keep traffic moving, but the most important thing we are doing is making it easier than ever for people to get to Himley without driving in by car.

"We have free shuttle buses picking up from locations all over the borough and dropping off afterwards.

"We have also introduced a new park and ride service, which will operate from a field close to the site.

"We would strongly urge people to use the park and ride or catch the bus, with all the details available on our website"

This year is the second in a row that the event has sold out in advance, promoting a warning to people without tickets that they may be turned away on the day.

The evening will see a 30-minute firework display, set to music inspired by the story of ‘Around the World in 80 Days’.

It will also include a large bonfire, giant funfair, street entertainment performances, a night market and food from around the world.

Councillor Shaun Keasey said: "Despite the issues we had last year, it clearly hasn’t put people off buying tickets with the event once again selling out well in advance.

"That is because it is the biggest and best show of its kind in the Midlands, and we will put on another great night on Saturday for more than 20,000 people once again."

Gates will open at 4.30pm, with the bonfire set to be lit at 7.45pm and fireworks from 8.30pm and the event is supported by Whittaker Bros Ltd and is sponsored by Heart 100.7, K2 Security, Jewson and Halesowen College.