Bonfire Night is a pretty standard thing here in the UK so it never really crossed my mind that other people around the world might not know about it. This year me and Dan didn’t do anything too fancy, but we did stay in and watched the Greenwich fireworks from our balcony – they were so pretty and I really enjoyed it!
It was only when someone on Twitter asked me what the occassion was that I actually started thinking about the night and how, yeah, it’s actually a bit weird isn’t it?
So for all my non-English followers, here’s a little background to Bonfire Night in the UK… It’s basically the celebration of a failed terrorist attack around 400 years ago.
Back in 1605, James I was king and he was a Protestant (surprise, surprise, religion caused a problem again!), so England at the time was a Protestant country. Without getting into too much detail, a terrorist group got together and started plotting – they wanted England to be Catholic again and figured they could get that… if they blew up the Houses of Parliment and killed James I and a whole bunch of politicians / ministers / people running the country.
The leader of the group was Robert Catesby whose dad had been persecuted for being Catholic, but the most famous member of the group was Guy Fawkes who knew his way around explosives!
They hid 36 barrels of gunpowder under the Houses of Parliment and planned to detonate it on November 5th. On the evening of November 4th, Guy Fawkes was left in the cellars to guard the gunpowder. owever, a letter had been sent anonymously to Lord Monteagle – a Catholic politician – warning him to stay away from Parliment on the 5th. This letter eventually got passed on to the king who ordered a thorough search of Parliment and just after midnight on the 5th Novemeber Guy Fawkes was found hiding under Parliment with the gunpowder and arrested.
Since then, the 5th November has become a day to celebrate this failed terrorist attack in the UK: People light bonfires and often build Guys atop them. (Think similar to scarecrows but made to represent Guy Fawkes) There are big firework displays all over the country and some places get really invested in it – last year me and Dan went down to Battle where there was a huge parade too!
So with that small history lesson over… let’s look at some fireworks photos!