Yay – it’s Bonfire Night! A night when people in the UK celebrate that in 1605, parliament was not blown up by Guy Fawkes. Traditionally, people light a bonfire, sometimes burning an effigy of Guy on the top (although his old school refuse to do so), and let off fireworks. Some historians think that Guy Fawkes and his fellow ‘conspirators’ were actually set up but there’s no need to let historical accuracy stand in the way of a party!
It’s quite bizarre that the way to celebrate something not being blown up is just to go down to the grocery shop or the newsagents and buy explosives (fireworks are category 2 and 3 explosives which anyone can buy as long as they are over 18). These days organised firework displays are becoming more popular because they are safer and better value. Which is probably a good thing, right? Because, you know, people buying actual explosives and then let them off in their back garden … (And sadly, there are injuries every year. About 500 people each year have required hospital treatment for firework injuries which happened at family or private parties.) And professionals are allowed to buy bigger and more spectacular fireworks which are not available to the public – let’s be honest, the average back garden firework display is just a tiny bit lame in comparison!
And letting off fireworks is not the craziest thing that happens – at the celebrations held at Ottery St Mary in Devon, where people carry burning tar-soaked barrels through the town. Again, what could possibly go wrong?
But (and you know we don’t usually like to get political) democracy is always a good thing to celebrate and hey, it’s been nearly a week since Halloween and the last chance for a party, so Bonfire Party On!
Safely, though. Just stand back a bit there…
Yay – ir’s Bonfire Night!