Wilson fears ‘fireball’ at the Craigyhill bonfire site

Bonfire at Linn Road Craigyhill. INLT 22-006-PSB
Bonfire at Linn Road Craigyhill. INLT 22-006-PSB

MP Sammy Wilson fears a car thought to still be buried in a Craigyhill bonfire could turn into a “fireball”, endangering lives and property.

Mr Wilson is seeking a meeting with the bonfire builders after a car was dumped on the pyre at Cairngorm Drive two weekends ago.

Despite initial reports that the car had been removed, the Times understands that the vehicle has instead been buried under other bonfire material at the site.

“It absolutely will be like a fireball if that car is not removed,” Mr Wilson told the Times.

“This will only bring bonfires into disrepute and if people want to keep tradition going they need to recognise that bonfires have to be properly managed, with proper materials.

“For those who want to portray bonfires in a negative way it gives them all the fuel and ammunition they need. If there is petrol in the car then once the fire goes up what’s the impact? It will be like a bomb.

“This isn’t far from a residential area so those are the kind of things I am thinking about and I am more than happy to meet with people to see if common sense can prevail.

“Once again, it’s an own goal by people who should know better. They want to preserve culture and they know they need support and this kind of negative story around the Twelfth is bad for our community.”

The MP says that local residents’ feelings must also be taken into account.

“I feel sorry for people who live close to bonfires and have to put up with this,” he said.

“If we are going to have bonfires they should be as far as possible from where people live and the size should respect nearby properties. I also think that collection should be kept closer to the Twelfth, so there is no potential for antisocial behaviour around them for a long period.

“When I was Environment Minister I promoted the use of beacons to try to keep the tradition of a fire, but there seems to be a competition to build the bonfires bigger and bigger and no one wants to take responsibility.”