5 of the best Bonfire Night celebrations 2016

    Shugborough Hall
    The West front of Shugborough Hall across the river Sow at sunset, Staffordshire. Credit: National Trust Images/Nick Meers

    Remember, remember, the 5th of November with our pick of this year’s best firework displays across the UK.

    The historical origins of Bonfire Night are nothing short of fascinating. Catholic dissident Fawkes spent months with his 12 co-conspirators planning to blow up King James I of England during the opening of Parliament on 5 November 1605.

    But they were caught red-handed, allegedly lighting their 36 barrels of gunpowder in a cellar below the House of Lords, and their assassination attempt was foiled. Londoners immediately began lighting bonfires in celebration of the plot having failed, and a few months later Parliament declared 5 November a public day of thanksgiving. Guy Fawkes and his surviving co-conspirators were all found guilty of high treason and sentenced to death in January 1606 via the gruesome means of hanging, drawing, and quartering. Though originally anti-Catholic in tone, Guy Fawkes Day, aka Bonfire Night, has since morphed into something somewhat merrier, becoming a highlight on any Londoner’s festive calendar.

    Fireworks, Shugborough Estate, Staffordshire, Saturday 5 November 2016, 12.30pm to 9pm

    Head to the biggest firework display in Stafford, set against the backdrop of beautiful Shugborough’s Triumphal Arch. Organised by Stafford and District Round Table, every penny raised is donated to local charities and good causes.

    Fireworks Festival, Alexandra Palace, London, Friday 4 November & Saturday November 5 2016

    The huge – and hugely popular – display over north London also features a funfair, ice skating and German beer festival. As well as impressive firework displays with a glittering panoramic view of London as its backdrop tickets include entrance to a family zone with funfair rides and entertainment, an adult funfair and a street food and craft beer village.

    Chatsworth House
    Chatsworth House Credit: VisitBritain/Martin Brent

    Bonfire and Fireworks, Chatsworth House, Saturday 5 November and Sunday 6 November 2016

    Expect a blazing Bonfire in the garden and two dazzling firework demonstrations throughout the evening. The first display will be centred on a ‘Disney Classics’ theme more suitable for children and the final display will be a heady mix of drama and energy to be enjoyed by all ages, as well as Glacial Art ice sculptors, an array of traditional bonfire food and drink, and entertainment from stilt walkers, live bands and more.

    Bath Abbey, Bath
    Bath Abbey, Bath. Credit: VisitBritain/Britain on View

    Fireworks, Bath, Saturday 5 November, 6.15pm

    Often known as one of the most beautiful cities in Britain, Bath provides the perfect idyllic backdrop to see fireworks illuminate the night sky this November 5. The Bath Rotary Club holds its annual firework display at the cricket pavilion, situated right in the city centre. The display will start at 7pm and tickets are £5 in advance with options of seated or standing seats.

    London, Thames
    The view from Victoria Tower of the Houses of Parliament, the River Thames, Westminster and Westminster Bridge, towards the East as dusk is falling. Credit: VisitBritain/Andrew Pickett

    The Lord Mayor’s Fireworks Display, riverside between Waterloo & Blackfriars, London, November 12, 5.15pm 

    As the grand finale to a day’s worth of extravagant celebrations, the fireworks display at The Lord Mayor’s Show is a pyrotechnical marvel. The civic pageant is steeped in history, having continued in the capital for 799 years, despite interruptions from the Black Death and the Blitz. To mark the end of the Lord Mayor’s Show and the beginning of a new mayoral year, London’s newly confirmed Lord Mayor will launch a splendid fireworks display over the river.

    It’s one of London’s most spectacular annual displays and you’ll be able to see the fireworks for miles, but for the best view head down to the riverside between Waterloo and Blackfriars Bridges, either on Victoria Embankment or on the South Bank.


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