Many people in the crowd on Penarth Esplanade said the display was even better than last year’s

Spectators searched out every best vantage point on Penarth Esplanade last night for the now-traditional,New Year’s Eve fireworks display organised by Michelin Star chef and restaurateur James Sommerin.

The first firework of the evening lit up the sky at 3 seconds before midnight – therefore starting James Sommerin’s display ahead of rival fireworks at the Holm House Hotel

Working on the beach James Sommerin’s well-drilled team kept the ordnance coming thick and fast. To hear the sounds of the fireworks, press the arrow key on the bar immediately below

Restaurant customers watched the action from the pavement

What started a few years ago as a modest experiment has now become a traditional fixture of the Penarth calendar

Customers watched enthralled as thousands of pounds worth of fireworks took to the sky

It was a dry and warm evening  – and an estimated 3-400 people – including many families with young children joined restaurant customers to watch the spectacle as – once again Mr Sommerin’s team set off a 12-minute sequence of fireworks from the beach.

Spectators lined the balcony and the roof of the Fig Tree Restaurant – which was also open until after midnight

Some of the crowd took up positions on the roof of the Fig Tree Restaurant which, like Restautant JS, was also open for the occasion along with its ground floor pavement ice cream and coffee bar.

The spectacular display lasted almost 20 minutes

This year – in contrast with previous years – there was a detachment of about half a dozen police officers standing by on Cliff Hill – but there was nothing for them to do.

Restaurateur James Sommerin seemed well pleased with the display – as were the crowds of spectators.

As the tide was coming in, there was less space than usual for the pyrotechnic team to  operate in but the organisers had thought of everything and – with safety in mind – had staff asking people ( very politely)  to move onto the landward side of the Esplanade.

Although the display appeared to slightly jump the gun in terms of starting time there was plenty to see and hear and local residents and restaurant customers seemed unanimous that this year’s display was the best yet .

For the first time the Holm House Hotel launched a spectacular firework display from its rear garden and for a time both displays competed for attention – but the Sommerin display had by far the greater fire-power  and the longest duration.

On this New Year’s Eve Penarth Pier Pavilion was actually open and had a large number of customers

In previous years the Penarth Pier Pavilion has been deserted and in total darkness on New Years Eve – but last night, under new management, it was open for a special Snowcat Cinema New Year’s Eve showing of the classic 1960 movie “The Apartment” starring Jack Lemmon and Shirley MacClaine.

The movie was timed to end at 23:55 after which a chorus of a lustily-sung “Auld Lang Syne ” could be heard emanating from the direction of the Pavilion .

Yet again Penarth Christmas Lights organised by the Penarth Town Council – were out of action

With all the activity on the sea-front Penarth Town Centre seemed relatively quiet. The Penarth Town Council Christmas lights – or at least 4 strings of them in the most prominent position on Windsor Road – were still out as they have been for several days .

The Penarth Town Council Christmas Lights have  now been out of action for Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve and now New Year’s Day. [The Penarth Town Council has consistently refused to be involved in any way  in the New Year’s Eve fireworks on the Esplanade ]


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  1. parsons says:

    Was an outstanding display again this year, thank you to The Sommerins.
    Happy New Year all and thank you PDN for your hard work and our local info.

  2. Lesley Monger says:

    Thank you for all the news items over the year and Happy New Year to you!🎉

  3. Zapper says:

    Shame they left all the used fireworks on the beach….right mess down there today!!

  4. i like to holiday in Le Marche says:

    Happy New Year PDN and thank you. 🙂
    Where would we without you?
    Ignorant of mud-dumping, the demolition of architectural gems and the flouting of rules designed to protect the environment – that’s where.
    Here’s to another 12 months of Lesley, Lou and Harry et al tamping because you do such an excellent job of sh!t-stirring.

    • Harry Parfitt says:

      Tamping? Having a giggle about a little group of anonymous nonentities collectively stirring a small cup of tea more like.

      • Money for Old Rope says:

        Talking of a ‘little group of anonymous nonentities’, how are Lesley, Lou and the rest of the team?
        Quite why your monstrous intellects feel compelled to interact with such apparently inconsequential chit-chat is anyone’s guess.
        Perhaps you’re getting paid for this?
        Can just hear the brief now…’subtly orchestrated campaign to undermine online critics of WAG etc by posing as sharp-witted ‘members of the public…’
        Talk about tragic. 🙂

    • Harry Parfitt says:

      I love the guessing game. Who’s behind these silly aliases? Trouble is it’s all too easy, the bluff, the bluster, the blinkers, the anger. Too few candidates unfortunately, the terrible twosome (?) Peter and Frank.

  5. Frank Evans says:

    Still 24 7 free parking outside Jamie Sommerins, I wonder if money has changed hands to prevent parking restrictions coming in???

Comments are closed.