‘Best Village Bonfire’ defies bad weather

Ewhurst and Staplecross Bonfire 2013, Staplecross.'26.10.13.'Pictures by: TONY COOMBES PHOTOGRAPHY
Ewhurst and Staplecross Bonfire 2013, Staplecross.'26.10.13.'Pictures by: TONY COOMBES PHOTOGRAPHY

There were fingers crossed all round when members of the Ewhurst and Staplecross Bonfire Society prepared to host the Guy Fawkes night celebrations last Saturday.

There were concerns the pending bad weather could deter spectators from attending and also turn the new bonfire site into a muddy quagmire.

But once again the event, dubbed ‘The Best Village Bonfire’ attracted a large crowd, with figures from the gate collection pointing to another superbly supported night.

John Lederer, spokesperson for the Ewhurst and Staplecross Bonfire Society, said: “This is very important, as a years effort by society members has gone into making this event a success, but also to the society as monies raised go to local charities and good causes.

“Once again the society only charged £1 to enter the bonfire field, which many a spectator described as unbelievably good value for such a magnificent firework display.”

The evening started with the ever-popular fancy dress competition which recorded a large number of entrants.

Ewhurst and Staplecross, Rye, Battle, Robertsbridge, Hastings, Northiam, Hawkhurst, Waterloo, Commercial Square, Cliffe, Robin Hood and Southover bonfire societies all took part in the atmospheric torchlit procession.

Once the procession and spectators were on the bonfire field, the bonfire was lit by Trevor Ovenden, one of the society’s many loyal sponsors.

John said: “The Ewhurst and Staplecross Bonfire Society would like to thank everyone who supported this event: the huge number of spectators and their generosity, all other bonfire societies who were represented and everyone who gave their time, energy and support throughout the year and on Saturday night to ensure that the evening was a roaring success. Special thanks go to the police, firemen, St John’s Ambulance and first aiders, Young Farmers for assisting the marshalling of the event and all other organisations involved.”

Money raised at the event will be distributed to charities and local good causes.

Donations will be presented at the Ewhurst and Staplecross Bonfire Society’s annual carol service, which will take place at St Mark’s Church, Staplecross, in December. For more about the society, visit www.esbs.org.net