Top 10 Places For Bonfire Night
by Dinah Hatch (October 2016)
Who doesn’t have fond memories of writing your name in the air with a sparkler, almost losing a tooth chomping toffee apples and getting a too-hot face after standing perilously close to the bonfire? Yay, it’s almost Bonfire Night! Here are our top ten places to ooh and aah, from urban extravaganzas to artsy little village affairs…
Showing below are all 10 records in "Top 10 Places For Bonfire Night"
Eastbourne Road, Halland, Lewes
Lewes, East Sussex, Nov 5, various times
No bonfire night round up can be complete without mentioning the most famous event of all in Lewes. Six separate processions weave through the pretty, winding streets of this once Saxon village on the evening of November 5, the smell of burning crosses hanging in the dark night air.
Expect costumed fun, firework displays and LOTS and LOTS of people crammed along the roadside. The event is famous for burning effigies of contemporary figures of fun in public life (Trump’s hair will go up nicely) so it’s always fun to see who they’ve lined up. This is a ticket only event and try not to bring a car – you will never find a space!
Stay at: Beechwood B&B, Eastbourne Rod, Halland, Lewes
23 Mecklenburgh Square, Bloomsbury, London
Alexandra Palace Fireworks Festival, Nov 4 and 5
For quite simply incomparable panoramic views across our capital city, Ally Pally’s firework festival cannot be beat (you’ll see everyone else’s firework displays too!). The festival is justifiably famous for laying on a rollicking good time as not only is the display (and laser show) first class but there’s also a German beer festival laid on with Bavarian style waitresses, live DJ and traditional oompah band.
A fab selection of street food and a craft beer stand should sort out any rumbling tummies too. We love the Carnival of the Macabre parade complete with giant skeletons which snakes around the grounds to the sound of a deathly drum beat. Ticketed.
Stay at: Stay at: Goodenough Club, 23 Mecklenburgh Square, London
Trumpington Street, Cambridge
Cambridge Midsommer Common, Nov 5, 7.30pm, FREE
This is the largest firework display in eastern England so the fact that it is free is rather impressive (thanks Cambridge city council). That said, it is asked that each visitor donate £2 towards the cost. Some 25,000 people attend the event on Midsommer Common in the heart of the city, attracted not only by the bonfire and the fireworks but also the fun fair (6pm-10pm) and sweet stalls (sorry, mums and dads). Don’t even think about driving to the event as this is the most popular firework display for miles around!
Stay at: Hotel du Vin - Cambridge, 15/19 Trumpington Street, Cambridge
19 Well Close Square, Whitby
Skinningrove Bonfire, north Yorkshire, 6.30pm
Skinningrove’s event started off in the 1980s as a village arts project and became so popular that it has become a must-attend Nov 5 event for many in the area. This vibrant little community works to make its celebrations individual and quirkily British (last year they burnt a huge fishing boat in a nod to the coastal spot’s fishing heritage, another year a gothic castle) so you never know what giant structure they will have hand-crafted to burn next! Each year funds are raised locally to pay for the creation and volunteers take part in workshops to create the display destined for the pyre. The fireworks are always stunning, making the event really memorable. Soups, hot dogs, drinks and fish and chips, natch, are in abundance.
Stay at: Stewart House B&B, Well Close Square, Whitby (15 miles drive up the coast)
278 West George Street, Glasgow
Glasgow Green fireworks, from 5pm, free
Another free event, some 50,000 people flock each year to the city’s 136 acre site, the city’s oldest park, to see a riot of colour and feel the flames close to their November-frozen chests. This year the council have promised some 3000 fireworks to light up the Scottish city, with a funfair, food stalls and live entertainment all kicking off at 5pm when the gates open. The display itself starts at 7.30pm.
Stay at: Malmaison Glasgow, West George Street, Glasgow
5 Osborne Road, Jesmond, Newcastle upon Tyne
Fireworks at the Fort, North Tyneside, Nov 3, FREE
In AD 122, the orders were issued to build Hadrian’s Wall in a bid to keep out the northern barbarians and protect the Roman Empire. Segedunum (or strong fort) was built to protect the eastern end of this wall, housing 600 Roman soldiers. These days, any fire is friendly and the pyrotechnics only come to life once a year when the fort puts on the most fabulous firework display. Watch the night sky over the River Tyne light up in magical fashion and perhaps nip into the museum to explore a historic treasure.
Stay at: Kensington House Aparthotel, Osborne Rd, Jesmond
Adams Lane, Down Thomas, Plymouth
Plymouth Hoe, doors open 4pm
Take your place at Plymouth Hoe and prepare for the spectacular firework display launched from the walls of the city’s Royal Citadel at 8pm. You’ll also be wonderfully situated to get a great view of the lighthouse Smeaton’s Tower, Hoe gardens and the Royal Naval War Memorial. The bonfire is lit at 7.30pm, just when you’ll be feeling a bit damp in those wellies! There will be fairground rides and catering stands open from 4pm and entertainment provided from 6pm.
Stay at: Langdon Court Hotel, Adams lane, Down Thomas, Plymouth
Hall Lane, Kemberton, Shifnal
Weston Park stately home, Shropshire, 5pm
Take your position in Capability Brown’s stunning parklands belonging to the stately home Weston Park, more famously known these days as the Staffordshire home of the massive V Festival. This is a rather more sedate affair, with two glorious firework displays set to music at 6pm (so young families can take the children home to bed) and 7.30pm for the late night revellers. The bonfire is lit at 5.30pm to get the party started.
Stay at: Church farm luxury B&B, Hall Lane, Kemberton, Shifnal
Castle Street, Cardiff
Sparks in the Park, Coopers Field, Cardiff, 5pm
The annual Sparks in the Park event has now become the biggest fireworks celebration in Wales. Run by Cardiff Round Table and now attracting around 20,000 people, it very sweetly offers a silent display for little ones who may not like the loud noises at 5.45pm, with music from Disney films played simultaneously, and then gets the serious bangers out for the 7pm adults display. All proceeds from the event are passed onto local charitable causes.
Stay at: The Angel Hotel, Castle Street, Cardiff
Castle Hill, Thurnham, near Bearsted, Maidstone
Leeds castle, Nov 5 sold out but Nov 6 tickets available, last admission 5pm, display 5.30pm
Leeds Castle never does things by halves and its annual celebration of Guy Fawkes’ foiled machinations are no different. Often cited as one of the most spectacular displays in Sussex and Kent, this year’s theme is great names in music so expect to see those names (or even your own, they say) projected onto the side of the castle. Get there with plenty of time to enjoy live music, hot food and drinks stalls. If you are feeling really swanky, end the evening with dinner at the venue’s Castle View restaurant.
Stay at: Thurnham Keep B&B, Castle Hill, Thurnham, Bearsted, near Maidstone
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