I have fond memories of Guy Fawkes as a child and even today I enjoy watching the colours and shapes made by fireworks exploding in the sky.

My parents used to buy a few crackers for us to let off every year. As an enthusiastic child, scared of very little, I always wanted to light them myself.

My parents were careful to make sure we stood a safe distance away and always had a bucket of water or a hose on hand for emergencies.

As I got a bit older Dad would let me light some under careful supervision.


These days I don't bother buying fireworks myself but I enjoy watching other people set them off - the view from the top of a hill in the days around November 5 is always quite spectacular.

Every year there are calls for the private sale of fireworks to be banned.

To me, that would be a shame.

Yes, there is some risk to letting off fireworks but we can't stop doing everything that comes with a slight risk.

If they are used responsibly the risk is minimal.

There will always be the silly teenagers who have 10-shot wars or try to make bombs out of the fireworks but the majority of those who buy and use crackers are sensible and safe with them.

They are part of life growing up for Kiwi kids.

It's an exciting and memorable time of year. Something families can do together.

As long as parents carefully supervise their children and teach them how to use fireworks safely, the risk is low.

Public displays are often put forward as the solution by those who want the sale of fireworks banned but it's not the same.

The fireworks at public displays are undoubtedly more spectacular than anything you let off at home but there is not the same excitement.

It doesn't create the same memories.

I look forward to one day letting fireworks off with my children and watching the excitement on their faces.

I hope the public sale of fireworks is not banned.

In saying that, if you are buying fireworks this year, please be safe and sensible.

The last thing I want is someone getting hurt.