This film is part of Free

"Please to Remember the 5th of November" - But Bridgwater Celebrates

Celebrate Guy Fawkes Night - Somerset-style - with this atmospheric film of Bridgwater's bonfire and costume parade.

Non-Fiction 1922 1 mins Silent


You can smell the smoke in this atmospheric newsreel item, which captures the riotous goings-on at Bridgwater's traditional Guy Fawkes parade. The film may be a bit murky, but the elaborate floats and costumed townsfolk are dimly illuminated in the fire light. The sense of excitement shines through, and there's no mistaking the medieval knights, their armour glinting in the flames.

Shooting at night proved challenging for early film cameras, which were less light-sensitive than later models. But the Topical Budget newsreel was undeterred, filming similar celebrations each year on 5 November. The Bridgwater carnival traditionally involves the unique custom of 'squibbing' - the simultaneous lighting of several large fireworks (squibs) - alas, not seen here.