Anyone who was there will know that Saturday’s Battersea Park fireworks were superb. Congratulations to the council and Pains Fireworks for organising them.

If you missed them, or want to see them again, but you don’t have a full 20 minutes, then my video might help. 20 minutes of fireworks compressed into 2 minutes… well, more accurately, 19 minutes of fireworks compressed into one minute, and then the final minute in full.

The reaction on Twitter was certainly positive, some going as far as to rate them as the best they’ve ever seen:

Some made cultural references I just don’t understand:

Some just made me proud to be a Battersea, rather than Clapham, resident:

Although some people were facing the wrong way:

Last Saturday saw Wandsworth’s 2009 firework display in Battersea Park. I understand the dry and clear (if somewhat cold) conditions resulted in a huge turnout and they shouldn’t have been disappointed by the fantastic display put on.

The iPhone video isn’t great quality and the sound of the fireworks somewhat drown out the music – a cover of ‘One Love’ – but does a pretty good job of giving a flavour of the climax of the display.

One of the beauties of Twitter is that you can get an instant reaction to events (for those who could access it, O2’s ever worsening network meant I had no connection during the event) and it was great to see comments like:

  • “Just watched an amazing fireworks display at Battersea Park, really impressed :)” jamiebarry
  • “Just back from Battersea Park fireworks – amazing show.” rossbalham
  • “bonefire day fireworks in battersea park were awesome. best fireworks show i’ve seen so far.” cezarneaga
  • “Battersea Park fireworks;best I’ve ever seen.Musically choreographed & stunning.Bonfire was a bit huge & scary
  • “Battersea Park fireworks last night were insanely good – best ever. were behind it, def check ’em out.” louisedoherty

I can only agree. A spectacular display, my congratulations to the team at Wandsworth and Pains Fireworks who put it all together.

Fairy cake and a cup of teaIt seems to have been an oddly quiet week.

Regeneration and Community Safety OSC (well, cycling)
I posted about the meeting the following day, so will not repeat the points. Except, rather smugly, to point out that I cycled to the meeting. I’m rather pleased that I’ve been managing to keep the cycling up – and am finding it an interesting experiment.

Last Monday was the first time I saw some really bad driving. Hitherto I’ve found other road users considerate, much to my surprise. There had been a few annoyances, but nothing major. However on Monday I found myself braking as a car turned left right in front of me and being nudged into the back of the bus by someone who didn’t want to give me any room. Perhaps worst was the driver who ostentatiously pulled into the oncoming lane to pass while pointedly accelerating then swerving rapidly to avoid a head-on collision with cars coming the other way.

My other cycling experiences have all been positive, and I’m going to carry on, but a salutary lesson that it isn’t all good!

Oxford Circus and Balham
It’s mischief and a little childish. But I really enjoyed the whole Oxford Circus and Balham episode. I think what made it sweeter, however, was that Westminster responded. As far as I’m aware the conversation was a few people with Balham connections tweeting about the crossings there. I don’t think anyone was really seriously suggesting Balham and Oxford Circus were the same.

The episode got picked up in a few places. I know the Municipal Journal ran it. The Guardian’s Dave Hill mentioned it and I understand the Local Government Chronicle have also featured my apology blogpost.

Alertbox in Northcote Road
This morning saw a formal launch for AlertBox in Northcote Road. AlertBox is a remarkably simple system that connects retailers and allows them to alert each other to potential problems – for example if they spotted a shoplifter – and to call for help if needed.

The system already runs in Southfields and Tooting where many shopkeepers rave about it.

The installation in Northcote Road was funded by the council and Battersea Crime Prevention Panel, with the technical support coming from the Community Safety Division.

Weekend events
This weekend see two major events. The first is the Battersea Park fireworks on Saturday. The display has always been one of London’s best and I hope the weather holds out to make it another successful year.

The second are the Remembrance Day services on Sunday. The two ‘civic’ services are at St Mary’s in Battersea and St Mary’s Putney. But there are other services taking place across the borough.