Bonfire Night

Karen Forrest

October 27, 2022

Bonfire Night always conjures up the fondest memories for me.  As a child, I remember getting wrapped up and heading out into the misty air, the buzz of excitement, watching a firework display whilst stood around the warming blaze of a crackling homemade bonfire with my little sister, mesmerised by a sparkler, and being allowed to stay up a little bit later as a special treat.

When my children were little, we would always find a local bonfire or firework display and head down because we knew this night felt magical to them, just as it had been for us when we were their age.  Some of our fondest family memories are of displays crammed full of people, the sound of ‘oohs’ and ‘ahs’ in unison as the fireworks exploded in a plethora of colour up high against the dark sky. The atmosphere was always one of cosiness and togetherness. Dark nights, conkers, falling leaves, hats and scarves.

I asked my friends what Bonfire Night conjures up for them: sparklers, toffee apples, Parkin, rockets, Catherine wheels, marshmallows on a stick, black peas, baked potatoes. Warm and treasured memories of a lifetime of Bonfire Nights.

I recently read the news that some Bonfire Night displays would not be going ahead this year in Manchester, and it gave me mixed feelings. On the one hand, I appreciate how rising costs are putting pressure on local authorities, and I also fully understand about the aim to be a net zero carbon city by 2038. However, with such an abundance of fond memories associated with Bonfire Nights of years gone by, the news that they would not be going ahead filled me with a profound sadness that other families might not get to make these great memories together.

Events such as Bonfire Night bring people together – families, friends, neighbours. Community events that provide a moment for people to enjoy this traditional night with each other. It’s always been there. It’s just one of those things that happens every year.

Moments like these are precious and it’s important to hold on to these memories and share our stories with each other.  Rather than cancelling such events, I think it’s so important that we look for new, cost effective and sustainable ways to create these moments and make those important memories.

And with that in mind…

Remember, remember the fifth of November

Gunpowder, Treason and Plot

I see no reason, why Gunpowder treason

Should ever be forgot!

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