Posted 19 Oct 2011

In local parks all across Leeds, thousands of people are expected to once again attend this year's spectacular Bonfire night. On November 4th, 2011, the skies of Leeds will be bright and colorful, as the fireworks and bonfires light up the night.

The Leeds Bonfire night has been a yearly event since 1605. It began after England's notorious traitor, Guy Fawkes, was caught in his attempt to blow up the Parliament Building in hopes of ridding the Protestants rulers and having the Catholic faith restored. Traditionally, a bag of old rags, clothes and/or newspapers is made to symbolize the body of Guy Fawkes and is thrown on top of the bonfire. For fun, children will sometimes create their own "Guy" and wheel him around in either a pram or a wheelbarrow, and depending on how funny or realistic it looks, adults may give them money.

Food is also a huge part of the celebrations. Since the nights can be cold despite the fire, oftentimes cups of hot soup and potatoes that have been baked in the bonfire are served. Yorkshire Parkin, which is similar to Gingerbread, but made with added oatmeal, is a favorite treat. Another tasty sweet you may see is Bonfire Toffee. Children often wonder if it is provided to keep them from talking, as it can be very sticky and chewy.

There will be festivities at some of the small local parks as well some of the larger parks, which celebrate with both a bonfire and a fireworks show. If you plan to attend, you should arrive early, as tens of thousands of people are expected to participate. There are plenty of Leeds hotels to chose from if you are visiting around this time. For times and locations, check your favourite park's website or call for details. Many events are free, but some of the parks are asking for a small entrance fee.

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