From Battersea to Blackheath, fireworks displays are a-plenty in celebration of Guy Fawkes on Bonfire Night. Here are seven ways to get involved in south west, west and south east London…
Words: Vicky Smith
1 Battersea Park
As firework displays go, Battersea Park’s annual spectacular is the one to head for if you’re after big bangs and an even bigger bonfire. This year, all the action kicks off from 6pm on 7 November, but if you want in, you have to plan ahead – this event’s so popular you must book in advance, as there won’t be tickets available on the gates.
See wandsworth.gov.uk for ticket details
2 Wimbledon Park
A good bet for those with younger children, the display at Wimbledon Park is split in two, with a bonfire and fireworks more suited to little ones at 6.30pm, before the main event at 8.30pm. Whichever you choose, the good news is that they’re both coordinated to music, and there’s also a funfair to explore afterwards. 5 November.
Taking place at Kingsmeadow Stadium on 6 November from 6.30pm, the Kingston Round Table and Rotary Club display combines a traditional fireworks display and bonfire with funfair rides and music from Radio Jackie DJs. A brilliant option for a family outing, plus profits go to local charities. Tickets £5, £4 in advance, under 5s free.
4 Bishop’s Park
An enormously popular event, not least because of its picturesque riverside location, Bonfire Night in Bishop’s Park is one of London’s best. Get there early to make the most of the food stalls and fairground rides, before securing a prime spot from which to enjoy the dazzling display. 6 November, 6pm. Advance tickets £6 from Lyric Hammersmith or £8 on the gate.
5 London Dungeon
If you’ve had your fill of standing around in the dark staring at the sky, discover the story behind the fireworks as an alternative at the London Dungeon’s special Guy Fawkes show. Not for the faint-hearted, you’ll learn all about gunpowder plot, meet some of the conspirators behind it, and perhaps even encounter the man himself…
Blackheath Fireworks remain free – hurrah! One of the capital’s few major displays to do so, but fireworks cost a fair whack, so do drop some pennies into the donation buckets while you’re there (you can also donate online). This fantastic display kicks off on 7 November at 8pm with a funfair from 12noon and food and drink stalls from 4pm. Some 100,000 people turn up to this event each year, so do arrive in good time to find your spot!
7 Crystal Palace
Crystal Palace Fireworks celebrates its 150th anniversary on 5 November this year (it all started back in 1865 with firework competitions). As ever there will be two shows – a children’s show at 7pm with fewer bangs but more magic, followed by the main show at 8.30pm, which will be set to music that ‘dances through the decades’ to celebrate the event’s anniversary. Sadly there is no funfair this year but food stalls will feature. Ticket are £6 for adults and £4 for 3-10 year olds or £17.80 for a family (advance tickets). On the gate it’s £10 for adults, £5 for 3-10 year olds and £25 for a family. Under 3s go free.
The Park Club’s annual Bonefire Night event will take place on 6 November this year. Aside from some of the most spectacular fireworks in West London, visitors can also enjoy the family disco, fun fair and tempting treats in the British Street Food Village. The Bonfire will be lit at 7pm before a performance by The Fabbagirls. Don’t miss the fireworks display at 7.45pm. Tickets are £15 for adults, £5 per child and can be purchased on the night. Find out more details at theparkclub.co.uk