Fireworks International have been a regular
and respected brand in our review sections since
we started the site thanks to some key products
such as Triple H Bomb and Laser Bombard. In
fact we were using their products in our displays
as far back as 1997!
Nearly seven years on from our
first order and it was very exciting to have
an opportunity to visit the FI HQ, not just
to put some faces to names but also to have
a closer look at their current product range.
The FI retail outlet in Derby
itself is easy to find, but we opted for the
slightly harder option of going straight to
the FI HQ, tucked away in very pleasant country
surroundings. We had an amusing drive around
pretending to look at the scenery but in reality
getting hopelessly lost, but finally made it
to the home of the legendary Triple H Bomb (they
should do guided tours for the faithful!).
After a welcome cuppa it was
time for a chat with Stuart Garner, head of
FI to find out a bit more about what makes the
company tick. "We're constantly looking
for better and better products", he explained.
"Quality is a key issue with us and we
visit China three or four times a year to source
products. Out of every hundred products shown
to us we may only choose to pursue one or two
of them". This was evident from the items
we had reviewed so far, but it was interesting
to hear that they visited China so often - many
companies only make a single annual trip.
"Our current range includes
something for everyone, we want to cater for
all tastes and have a good selection of low
noise items too", he explained, a reference
to the challenges on the industry recently regarding
firework noise. "In addition to our retail
outlets we supply by mail order to the whole
of the UK mainland from Scotland to the South
Coast". I can certainly vouch for that
having used their mail order service myself
in the past.
It was clear after even a short
chat with Stuart that FI are a team that takes
great pride in their service, for example he
mentioned that the whole team mucks in around
the chaos of Guy Fawkes to get orders packed
in time. Having the people at the top of a business
still take a hands-on approach with the day
to day operations is good to see. The company
was actually started nearly a quarter of a century
ago, with Stuart taking over the reigns about
a decade ago, impressive statistics in an age
where many companies come and go in a matter
of a few years.
I asked Stuart for his thoughts
on the recent legislation issues which are always
a worry not just for enthusiasts but for the
trade too. "We shouldn't fear legislation"
he replied. "It should make it a cleaner
industry. Legislation will help to take away
nuisance and illegal fireworks which have a
negative impact on us all".
Now it was time to get down
to some serious hardcore firework fondling,
with Stuart kindly offering to give us a tour
of a store and a bigger magazine, an offer we
never refuse! After another drive into the depths
of Derbyshire it was over to the camera now
which was working in overdrive mode...
The view down one of the bigger magazines. Awesome!
can click on any thumbnail to view a bigger
My inbuilt "Best Buy" radar
soon found the Triple H Bombs. Here are
four, sitting on a box of eight, which
are sitting on another box of eight...
er, that's twenty Triple H Bombs. But
Look at this lot! When
you're used to opening an order which
contains one or two of an item, to see
this many is somewhat mindboggling.
The Best Buy Crazy Horses. Not one...
not two but, er, around three or four
Happy Wizard, and I'm sure
Gandalf would have been if his firework
display at the start of Lord Of The Rings
had contained this much pyro.
A large selection of Rocket packs.
The magazine doors. Few
enthusiasts really appreciate the extreme
measures - and expense - required to store
fireworks which are, technically, explosives
of course. Thick walls and thick doors
A polite notice to trespassers. Note
the reference to the 1875 explosives act,
much of it still in force over a century
We had a brilliant time looking
around some of the FI stores, but we hadn't
even come close to seeing it all despite the
amount of pyro shown above. "We have stores
from 3,000 square feet up to 23,000 square feet",
explained Stuart. "These are at capacity
ready for the peak season".
After a drink to calm the adrenaline,
it was time for a look at some individual items
which form the FI range. At this point we were
joined by Graham who is FI's travelling sales
manager, looking after the companies who stock
their products up and down the UK. He's a busy
man too, having just arrived from Norwich (where
we had come from!) prior to another trip out.
From chatting with him and Stuart, it did seem
as if they really looked after their trade customers,
ensuring they had everything they needed to
Let's take a look at some of
the FI line-up now. You'll find these items
- and more from FI - reviewed in our main review
sections complete with pictures and video so
be sure to take a look to find out how they
Easily the most talked-about FI product recently,
the Rocket Volley,
which takes the idea to new heights with no
less than 25 rockets!
Black Widow, one of FI's really cheap
19 shot cakes at around a fiver. The cheaper
end of FI's range performed extremely
well in the reviews.
Wizzy Wombat, a mix of
screeching and pops.
Grand Stallion, a 16 shot cake and another
top performer despite the minuscule £5.75
The chances of anything
coming from Mars are a million to one,
but still they come, here is Martian Attack.
Another cake on the spidery theme, Tarantula,
I like the B-movie style graphics on this
OK this pack doesn't look
much, but check out the review, these
rockets were wolves in sheeps' clothing.
Fairies From Hell, weird name and weird
label but the effects were really good.
On to the big ones now,
the mighty Tiger's Revenge. We were looking
forward to seeing this one in action.
My personal favourite on paper, King
Of Colour, reputed to be the equivalent
of around three Triple H Bombs.
We had a great time on our short
but informative visit to see FI, and in terms
of the new products we saw the trip was well
worth it. Check out the review sections for
full details and video of the above items (and
more) which will help you source some fantastic
new fireworks for your displays.
Many thanks to Stuart for his
hospitality and time.
We'll end this report with a
selection of long exposure pictures of various
FI products in action. Enjoy!
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