History of Bonfire night 

Happy Bonfire night everyone. Traditionally Bonfire night is known as Guy Fawkes Night and in 1605 Guy Fawkes and a team of men failed to blow up the houses of parliament, where it was thought that the catholic King James the first was to be holding a meeting that evening. Guy Fawkes was arrested on November 5th 1605 which was exactly 415 years ago. Since then, Bonfire Night has been celebrated by letting off fireworks and some even burn bonfires with an effigy of Guy Fawkes guarding the flames. That’s a giant doll to you and me.  

Why is this important? 

Well, Open Theatre has pledged to be more environmentally friendly this year, as we care about our planet and all those who inhabit it. Bonfire Night can be known for creating quite a mess in our beloved green spaces and lands. Particularly if individuals are hosting their garden parties or going to organised events. We must keep in mind that animals share our earth too and many of them are often scared on Bonfire night, particularly cats and dogs. 

What can I do to help? 

There is plenty that we can do to make Bonfire night more environmentally friendly. If we are going to organised displays we must remember to put our litter in the bin. If we have been invited to a garden party, we must use sparklers safely and responsibly. We must not leave them anywhere for our beloved pets to stand on and get hurt. We must continue to remember to recycle and we must think about the effects we are having on the spaces that we are using to host our Bonfire parties. Please, no burning lanterns, as these can get caught in trees and start fires. We want everyone to enjoy Bonfire night but in a safe, responsible and environmentally friendly way. 

How else can I enjoy Bonfire night?   

Bonfire night is a naturally thrilling sensory experience. There are many flashing lights and loud bangs but please be mindful of those who are hypersensitive to sound or light. For some people, loud sounds hurt their ears and bright lights hurt their eyes. Let us all enjoy Bonfire night in our unique ways. If someone is scared of fireworks or does not like them, that is also ok. They could go apple bobbing instead or hold a sparkler instead of watching the fireworks. Or if fireworks completely aren’t their thing, they could sit inside in the warm with a nice hot mug of whatever they enjoy. Please let us know how you are planning to celebrate and keep the festivities environmentally friendly. We love to hear your experiences and stories. For now, from all of us at Open Theatre, stay safe and have a happy environmentally friendly Bonfire Night. 


Ridgway, C. (2016) 5th November 1605 The Gunpowder Plot [Online] Available from <https://www.tudorsociety.com/5th-november-1605-the-gunpowder-plot/> [15/09/2021]