Organisers of a popular fireworks display have been told they should “count themselves very lucky” that there was not a “major disaster” amid complaints of overcrowding.

Beaconsfield Cricket Club’s fireworks show on Saturday night, which was the 40th one to be held there and attracted 8,000 people, has been branded “an absolute joke” by frustrated visitors who said it was the busiest they had ever seen.

Shan Chaudri told the Bucks Free Press they left at 6pm – before the main fireworks display even started – because it was “simply not safe” to stay any longer and they feared they would lose sight of their children.

Explaining what happened in a letter of complaint to the organisers, Shan said: “The event was very badly organised and a major health and safety hazard for all that attended.

“The sheer number of people that were in attendance meant it was impossible to safely move around and having a single entry point and exit meant there was a one hour queue to get in and we arrived at 5pm.

“I would go far as to say that you are lucky there have not been serious injuries. We, including many others, left at 6pm as it was simply not safe to stay there and risk injury or losing sight of our children.

“Friends of ours who did stay say it was awful later on and a number of children went missing and there was very little regard from the organisers of which there was hardly any or the PA in locating them.

“The queues for the food stalls were an hour long and half the site near the entrance was unused which meant you could not move at the far end as all the stalls and entrance to the fun fair were all the far end.

“The whole thing was a joke and I won't even go into the situation outside with the roads and parking. This is without mentioning the total lack of sanitising stations or any hint of Covid social distancing.

“Count yourself very lucky you aren't looking at a major disaster here.”

Another visitor to the display blasted it as a “shambles” with “way too many tickets sold”, and they too left before the fireworks started.

Another also shared their complaint letter on Facebook, criticising the “gridlocked” roads outside the Wilton Park cricket club, adding: “The roads all around Beaconsfield were full of dumped and abandoned cars. Heaven forbid emergency services needed to get anywhere.

“If you are going to put on such a huge scale event it has to be your responsibility to ensure there is adequate parking somewhere nearby. It cannot simply be the email we all received ‘park in a side road nearby’.

“How someone didn’t get injured on the road tonight is beyond me.”

They also complained about the queue to get in, which led to them missing the first lot of fireworks, the “unbearable” level of music and the “shocking” volume of people inside, while also raising concerns about how two missing children were dealt with.

A spokesman for Beaconsfield Cricket Club said they were “really sorry” that some were disappointed with the experience and they will analyse the complaints and respond to each one individually.

They said: “Our fireworks display is the largest event is Beaconsfield’s calendar and is always extremely popular with huge demand for tickets.

“The capacity of the ground is over 10,000 but we chose to limit the ticket sales to 8,000. The event sold out prior to the event, probably a sign of pent-up demand for ‘normal events’ post-Covid.

“We work closely in conjunction with the Bucks Council Safety Advisory Group and work hard to comply with all their recommendations. Safety is our highest priority. A detailed event management plan and event risk assessment was in place for our event as well as appropriate levels of public liability insurance.

“Parking restrictions outside the cricket ground along the A40 were applied in conjunction with Transport for Bucks to ensure free flow of traffic along the red route through the town.

“We employed the professional fireworks company Titanium that has been responsible for safely providing firework displays at major events including the London New Year’s Eve Display and Edinburgh Hogmanay celebrations, among others.

“We employ large numbers of professionally qualified security staff from Adams Park security to manage and control the visitors to our event. Adams Park Security are familiar with management of large crowd situations at Wycombe Wanderers Football Club and they did a great job checking bags at our entrance to remove alcohol, sparklers and other fireworks.

“They maintained our boundaries throughout the evening to ensure that people without tickets did not enter the event. During the evening, they had to escort just one person from the event.

“Bucks Event Medics, including a manager, a paramedic, two technicians and three First Responders were on hand in a designated First Aid station to deal with any issues that arose.

“An ambulance was also on site throughout the evening. On Saturday, Bucks Event Medics reported that the only health related incident they had to deal with was one nosebleed.

“Three doctors were also working at the event who are Beaconsfield Club members.

“During the evening, four children were separated from their parents as sometimes happens at large events, but this situation was planned for and they were quickly reunited with their parents as we have a detailed ‘Lost Child Policy’ to deal with such situations and this was applied rapidly and effectively. Communication behind the scenes is via walkie-talkies.

“A local company provided tower lighting across the site to ensure our guests are able to move around the cricket field safely.

“The huge popularity of the event this year naturally meant that there would be queues and some delay.

“We are extremely grateful that our guests queued in such an orderly way to enable safe entry and exit from the ground.

“During the evening, the local police walked along the queue to provide reassurance to our guests who were waiting to enter the ground and they issued parking tickets to cars parked illegally.

“We are really sorry that some people have expressed disappointment about their experience on Saturday night where they felt that the event was too crowded for them and they felt unsafe.

“We are grateful that they have reached out and we appreciate their valuable feedback. We intend to analyse it in detail so that we can further improve our event in the future. We intend to respond to any complaint received individually.

“The Beaconsfield Cricket Club Fireworks Display was extremely popular with larger numbers than usual attending and we are delighted to say that our overwhelming feedback has been very positive.”