How to celebrate Bonfire Night in Britain

November means big bangs, blazing bonfires and fizzing fireworks across Britain, as towns and cities remember, remember, the fifth of November! Wrap up and embark on a fiery journey into history at these flaming events that commemorate Guy Fawkes Night – the failed Gunpowder Plot and the conspirators’ attempt to blow up the Houses of Parliament in 1605. Expect fireworks, light shows and an abundance of other entertainment all over the country.

1. Alexandra Palace, London

Offering spectacular views across London in addition to a breathtaking fireworks showpiece, the annual fireworks and bonfire show at Alexandra Palace is fun for all the family. From a stunning laser show and huge bonfire to live music, a German beer festival, funfair and an abundance of street food, you’ll want to arrive early to see all the action on 1-2 November.

Alexandra Palace

2. Crystal Palace Park, London

The green space of Crystal Palace Park is illuminated for Guy Fawkes Night on 5 November, with two shows across the evening. Expect more colour and less bangs during the earlier children’s show, before the main event rounds off the evening, with all proceeds going to charity.

Crystal Palace Park

3. Battersea Park, London

Expect a bang at the annual firework display in Battersea Park to mark Guy Fawkes Night, which attracts mammoth crowds year after year. Arrive early on 2 November to grab a great viewing spot as the park fills up quickly.

Battersea Park

4. Leeds Castle Fireworks Spectacular, Kent

Fireworks display seen from across the moat at Leeds Castle near Maidstone in Kent, UK.

Celebrate the 900th anniversary of one of Kent’s showpiece castles at the Leeds Castle Fireworks Spectacular. The castle has promised to take you ‘around the world’ on a themed evening featuring stunning pyrotechnics and the ‘biggest firework display in the south east of England’ on 2-3 November, featuring an incredible 25,000 starbursts! Explore the castle’s maze and falconry displays during the afternoon against a backdrop of live music and performers, before tucking into a variety of delicious food options as the fireworks get underway!

Leeds Castle Fireworks Spectacular

5. The Tar Barrels of Ottery St Mary, Devon

The town of Ottery St Mary marks Guy Fawkes night like no other, as its townspeople lug flaming barrels of tar through the streets, a tradition dating back hundreds of years. Although the origins of this annual pastime are unknown, many link it back to historical events including the gunpowder plot in 1605 and as a warning for the approach of the Spanish Armada less than 20 years earlier. The locals remain fiercely proud of the tradition and a 30-foot bonfire, fireworks and a fairground add to the fun. Just remember to stand well back from the evening tar barrel procession!

The Tar Barrels of Ottery St Mary

6. LEGOLAND Fireworks Spectacular, Berkshire

Fireworks over Miniland at The LEGOLAND Windsor Resort.

Watch as the sky over LEGOLAND Windsor comes alive with colour as the theme park’s Fireworks Spectacular returns for another year. Don special Brick glasses and watch as the dazzling LEGOLAND fireworks transform into exploding LEGO bricks there’s also a host of music and entertainment to enjoy! LEGOLAND also gets a makeover for Halloween as part of Brick or Treat, promising plenty of child-friendly thrills and frights! Taking place on selected days in October and November, you’ll get access to numerous spooktacular activities, as well as to more than 55 rides, live shows and attractions.

LEGOLAND Fireworks Spectacular

7. Sparks in the Park, Berkshire

The grounds of the Grade II-listed stately home at Swallowfield Park in Berkshire are illuminated for Bonfire Night with a spellbinding firework display. A huge bonfire adds to the Sparks in the Park celebrations on 2 November, where you’ll be able to sample a dazzling array of live music, food and drink in addition to the bright lights and loud bangs of this family-friendly event!

Sparks in the Park

8. Fantastic fireworks at Longleat, Wiltshire

Fireworks at Longleat House, Wiltshire.

The night sky is filled with bold autumnal colours as the grounds of Longleat are illuminated on the weekends leading up to Bonfire Night. Come face-to-face with lions in the safari park, see England’s only koalas in Koala Creek and tackle the newly renovated Adventure Castle before exploring the stately house and gardens. The fireworks coincide with the Great British Autumn, a set of family-friendly events to mark the October school holidays that includes pumpkin carving for Halloween, owl displays and ride-on tractors.

Fantastic fireworks at Longleat

9. Chatsworth House, Derbyshire

Wrap up warm and celebrate the 50th anniversary of the moon landings – as well as Bonfire Night – in the glorious surroundings of Chatsworth House. With two dazzling firework displays set to light up the grounds on the evenings of 2 and 3 November, including one specifically for children each night, and an array of entertainment and delicious food, this family friendly show has something for everyone. Tuck into a delectable hog roast or indulge in sweet treats before the fireworks take you on ‘an extraordinary voyage into space’.

Chatsworth House

10. Winchester charity bonfire and fireworks, Hampshire

Winchester Fireworks Show. Credit: Craig Smithson

Winchester’s largest annual charity event returns with a bang in 2019 to mark its 61st year! Alongside roaring fireworks and a gigantic crackling bonfire, there’ll be ample opportunity for you to take in the city’s magnificent architecture as a huge procession weaves its way through the city’s historical core.

Winchester fireworks

11. Penrhos Beach, Holyhead, Anglesey

Rockets and fireworks explode over Holyhead Bay as the Welsh island of Anglesey celebrates Bonfire Night with a bang! Crowds flock to Penrhos Beach for the show, where there’s also a funfair, local music and seaside rides to keep children entertained before the fireworks begin! Watch as the bonfire roars into life and the lights from the pyrotechnics glisten across the sand – it’s a sight to behold!

Penrhos Beach

12. Wynyard Hall, County Durham

Celebrate Bonfire Night in 150 acres of stunning historical landscape at the Wynyard Estate in the picturesque Tess Valley. Dating back to 1230, the estate on the outskirts of Durham was transformed into a striking four-star hotel in 2008 and is all set to mark the occasion in style on 3 November. As well as the bright lights and fireworks, there’ll be plenty of entertainment and fairground rides to keep all of the family amused.

Wynyard Hall

13. Heveningham Hall, Suffolk

Get set for plenty of bangs at the Heveningham Hall fireworks show in Suffolk, set in 6000 acres of beautiful parkland, designed by renowned landscape architect Capability Brown. The grounds of the Grade I listed Georgian mansion will be illuminated on 2 November by fireworks and a huge bonfire, while live music from headline act The Feeling will accompany the show. Expect an array of regional food and drink, including a hog roast, as well as a funfair and numerous other entertaining rides, with all proceeds going to charity.

Heveningham Hall
04 May 2020(last updated)