Aleeza Shah explains the bonfire night tradition

Everything you need to know about the SU Fireworks Night and our love/hate relationship with Guy Fawkes.

Bonfire night, also known as Guy Fawkes Night, takes place every 5th of November across England since its start in 1605. Here’s everything you need to know about the National celebration, and why we celebrate it by firing dangerous explosives into the air.

What happened:

A small number of people including Guy Fawkes, gathered under the leadership of Robert Catesby, with the idea to blow up the Houses of Parliament. The group wanted to kill the King and declare an attack on the state. To effectively carry out their plan, the group obtained 36 barrels of gunpowder and stored them just below the House of Lords. Guy Fawkes was in the cellar at the time that the authorities stormed in on the very early hours of November 5th and was caught, tortured and executed.

On the very night that the Gunpowder Plot was foiled, bonfires were set alight to celebrate the safety of the King. To this day, guards still search the cellars of the Houses of Parliament before the state opening in November.

Bonfires to celebrate the safety of the king. Photo credit: Pixnio

What is happening on campus:

SU Fireworks Night will be taking place this Friday starting at 6pm at The Lakes. There will be a professional display with a DJ on all night. There are stalls all over Square 5 including Rebel Student Media who are hosting a Coffee House Session alongside a live performance of magic and fire! Societies and sports clubs will set up stalls to raise money for their causes and there are even special deals around campus upon presenting your registration card. And did I mention its free?

It’s a night for family and friends to enjoy themselves. A tradition that will live on forever in England. Wrap up warm everyone and be safe, I’ll see you all down at The Lakes!

Andreea Szasz
as16010@essex.ac.uk