Bonfire Night

Where: Countrywide
When: 5th November
Time: Evening (times vary)


Bonfire Night aka Guy Fawkes Night is the anniversary of the discovery of Guy Fawkes with barrels of gunpowder in cellars beneath the  Houses of Parliament in 1605. Bofires are lit, effigies of Guy Fawkes are burned and fireworks set off in commemoration of the narrow escape of  King James I and Parliament from being blown up by Fawkes and his fellow conspirators. All over the country similar events take place – it is one of the most popular national celebrations of the year. My local large-scale bonfire & firework display  is at Hexham, organised as a charity fundraising event by the local Round Table and is always spectacular and well attended. It used to be a widespread practice for families to have their own  bonfire and fireworks in the garden and while the sale of fireworks is now more restricted for safety reasons, plenty of people still like to set off a few bangs of their own. Bonfire Night is particularly enthusiastically celebrated in Sussex, where towns and villages stage their own series of individual displays in a carefully orchestrated charity-fundraising season lasting from late September to mid November (see link below for full programme details and also see separate listings on this site for Lewes and Rye).

Helpful Hints

Displays are usually well advertised but be aware that some places always hold their event on the nearest weekend to the 5th rather than the 5th itself if it falls during the week. They usually attract large crowds so allow plenty of time to get there.

For the details of all the Sussex Bonfires click here :

Photos by John Paul Hardy (Fireworks), Richard Penn (Bonfire)