Waterloo Bonfire Society’s triumph in the Lewes Bonfire Costume Competiton bodes brilliantly for what to the Society, is the more important matter of Society participation in this year’s Bonfire.
President Michael Chartier told the Express: “I am delighted with the result of the Costume Competition this year and the win obviously recognises the way the Society is moving forward. I must emphasise we are very much a family society with young children taking part along with their parents and grandparents. Another sign of our continuity is that all our officers stay in place - some for ten years or more. This means they really know what they are doing. We have a strong tradition of producing wonderful costumes and, of course, our tableau....details of which, of course, I cannot reveal!”
Waterloo members form their procession from The Lamb in Market Lane where the Society’s youngsters, led by Junior Staff Bearers, take part in the First Procession from 5.30pm. Wreath bearers form the contingent for the 6.15pm Second Procession towards the War Memorial where they halt for their Remembrance Ceremony. The 8.20pm and 9.35pm Grand Processions follow with burning letters WBS and the Star and Moon plus amazing set pieces en route. This latest procession also sees First Pioneers carrying 17 blazing cross torches and the tar barrel which are cast into the River Ouse before members and their thousands of enthusiastic followers head towards the firesite for their firework display.
Costumes - as always - will not fail to amaze. They range from Mongolian Warriors, Romans, Greeks (including a worryingly lifelike Minotaur,) Victorians, Olde English Puritans and the award-winning Tudors, headed by a coterie of Kings, Queens and elegant courtiers. There’s more than a touch of theatre about the Waterloo procession which make this a Society which never fails to enthuse the people of Lewes.