The day the Queen came within touching distance!
Everyone has their own memories of the Queen. Ours was when, as the first fireworks display organiser to promote daylight fireworks, our paths crossed some 35 years ago. It was 1987, when Fantastic Fireworks had been going only a few years. We received a call from the Commonwealth Institute in Kensington. They were preparing for a Royal visit and wanted to entertain HM with some fireworks. As this was going to be in the middle of the day, they wanted our new daylight fireworks. Luckily, for such an auspicious occasion, we had a stock of red, white and blue parachute batteries. These were fired into the sky in barrages of cardboard tubes which would burst open to produce a colourful cavalcade of floating canopies like the ones pictured here. Back then everything was hand-lit and we were out there running round igniting the display. The Queen was watching from an open upstairs window. We could see her quite clearly enjoying the fun as parachute after parachute floated down and dozens of children excitedly chased after them. At one point a parachute came so close the Queen put her hand out to catch it! We don’t suppose she ever kept it as a souvenir but if she did it may soon be unearthed along with the thousands of precious mementoes of her 70-year reign. RIP Your Majesty.