Best firework displays in London this weekend
Remember, remember: bring a jacket, an umbrella and crucially, some gins in tins. It’s the fifth of November this weekend, and that means it’s time to get acquainted with the best firework displays in London. Otherwise known as Bonfire Night, and fireworks will be bruising the sky with their multicoured flashes and bangs.
It’s an odd way to ‘celebrate’ 400- odd years since Guy Fawkes tried to break into the Houses of Parliament and failed, and probably the oddest of annual British traditions, but anyway, it’s something nice to do in this gloomy period when it’s too early to get excited about Christmas. Wherever you are in the capital there’ll be fireworks to see, even though a couple of key displays including Victoria Park and Blackheath aren’t running this year.
Raise a glass to the sky and get ready to say “ooh” and “aah” at one of the Bonfire Night locations below. All firework displays are on Saturday 5 November in the evening except Coram’s Fields which are on Friday night, 4 November.
NORTH LONDON FIREWORKS
Alexandra Palace will host its annual display this year, boasting panoramic views across the capital from the building’s historic forecourt. Expect street food and artisanal drinks, and Gok Wan will be on live compere duties, entertaining the crowds before the main show kicks off at 8pm. (We’re not sure what he’ll be chatting about but why the hell not.)Coram’s Fields in Camden also has a display on Friday night, 4 November, starting a little earlier at 6pm which is more geared towards younger children, with a funfair, but don’t worry, there’s also street food and drinks for those looking for more of a party vibe.
EAST LONDON DISPLAYS
East London’s behemoth firework display at Victoria Park isn’t happening this year, which seems like bad news, but here’s our idea: go anyway. There’ll be no hour-long queues to get in and realistically if you look up you’ll see fireworks all over the sky, like you always do, only this time it’ll be without the crowds. Bring your own tinnies and have an alternative Bonfire Night benefitting from the fireworks of others. It’s the sort of sly move that’d make Guy Fawkes proud.
SOUTH LONDON EXPLOSIONS
Beckenham has its annual display at Croydon Road Recreation Ground and there are even two displays to be considerate to children and animals that might be scared by the big bangs. One at 6pm will be quieter and there’s another one at 7.45pm with the bigger explosions and flashes. (Being more considerate is a general trend in fireworks anyway, as more of us notice how scared our dogs and cats can get. As ever, charities like the Blue Cross, Combat Stress and Wildlife Aid Foundation are urging people to buy ‘low noise’ fireworks – easily found online – for private displays so as to not harm pets.)
WEST LONDON EVENTS
West London has more fireworks displays this year than any other part of London. There are displays in Barnes, Battersea, Chiswick Park and Wimbledon Park, probably because there are more open green spaces in west London. Arrive at them all by 7.30pm in good time for the displays, except in Chiswick where the show starts at 7pm. Wimbledon Park also has an earlier, quieter show at 6.45pm and a later one at 8.30pm that’ll have more of a grown-up feel.