Lewes Bonfire: Cliffe Bonfire Society wunt be druv

Cliffe Bonfire Society
Cliffe Bonfire Society

They are the mavericks of Lewes Bonfire so what will the Bonfire Boys and Girls of the mighty Cliffe have in store for us?

Last year we saw an 18 foot high vampyric tableau of Syrian president Bashar Al-Assad carted through the streets of Lewes, sporting a gun which shot out ‘chemical weapons’.

And the year before who could forget that Pagan inspired wicker man the size of a two storey house which the members of the society set on fire and detonated on their fire site near Ham Lane?

Cliffe Bonfire Society was formed in 1853 and it is currently one of the largest in Lewes, with around 1,000 members.

This year Cliffe’s First Pioneers will be Vikings and its Second Pioneers will be French Revolutionaries, Moors and Saracens.

Smugglers can be recognised by their black and white jerseys and red caps.

Look out for Cliffe’s street tableau which will be carried during the procession, burning crosses, and its fire banners.

Amongst the fire banners is one reading We Wunt Be Druv, a Bonfire motto in the Sussex dialect which tells the listener: we won’t be pushed around.

At the fire site later in the evening you can expect the Archbishop of Cliffe to make his address, while dodging bangers hurled by Smugglers, as the crowd chants ‘Burn him, burn him.’

His attendants will attempt to defend him by swatting away the explosives.

Effigies of Guy Fawkes and Pope Paul V will be detonated with fireworks, giant heads representing the Enemies of Bonfire will be blown up, fireworks will be propelled into the night sky and a tableau of “mammoth proportions” will be destroyed with even more fireworks.

What more could you want from Bonfire Night?

For timings and more information about the society buy Cliffe’s programme.