Last night, as anyone who subscribes to my weekly newsletter would have known, a firework display took place by the Millbank Tower in Westminster.

Not knowing if this would be a tiddly display on a barge, or a gigantic display in the skies, the question is where would be the best place to photograph them from.

The ideal photo would be to have Parliament in the foreground with the firework behind, and plotting sightlines on a map suggested the best place for that would be the roof of the MoD offices in Whitehall.

This I concluded was not an option, and I ruled out Parliament Square as the angles were too risky if the display didn’t reach high enough, so the second best place was the Hungerford Bridge. High enough to get a view, but with the downside of vibrations from the trains.

Would the fireworks be in the correct line of sight, would my camera lens be able to get the fireworks and Big Ben* in the same photo. Would the trains stop running for a few minutes?

With some exceptions, most of it worked out even better than I had dared to hope.

Fireworks by Westminster

Fireworks by Westminster

Fireworks by Westminster

In fact, the north side of Parliament Square would have probably been a perfect location for the photos. Oh well, live and learn. The fireworks started just before 9pm, so the bongs of Big Ben merged delightfully with the booms of the fireworks.

Fireworks by Westminster

Fireworks by Westminster

If you were one of the many people who asked me what the fireworks were for last night via Twitter sorry if I came across as a bit annoyed. However, loads of people asking the same question, when I had tweeted the details several times during the day, and the event is listed on my events guide and newsletter gets a bit aggravating after a while.

Maybe sign up here for the newsletter?

Fireworks by Parliament

The full set of photos is here.

I really do need to find some way of buying a better camera as well, as I missed a lot of good photos due my clunky 7-year old Cannon really not keeping up with the demands I put on it when taking loads of photos in quick succession.

*Yes I know it’s the Elizabeth Tower


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  1. Michelle says:

    I would highly recommend the Pentax K-5 or K30, brilliant in lowlight and weather sealed for the wet weather in London!

    • IanVisits says:

      Sadly, it’s less a matter of deciding which camera to buy than finding a way of paying for it.

  2. Will hobson says:

    Me and my girlfriend just want to thank you for adding this on your blog. We were stood by Millbank pier, it was my second day with her and it took her completely by suprise when the first rocket went up. We were just metres away from the barge and it was overwhelmingly beautiful – the look on her face afterwards was perfect. I wouldn’t have known anything about it without looking on here and from the lack of people stood anywhere near us, no one who doesn’t look on here even had a clue it was on.

    So anyway, thank you! Helped me make her week as perfect as possible and it was such a last minute addition to my plans, but may well be one of the best things out of all them.

  3. Malcolm Dawes says:

    Excellent photos – but who organised this massive firework display and told no one (other than IanVisits) that it was on – the MP’s had a good view – surely not on their expenses?

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