What the Fawkes? Top Bonfire Night Awareness Campaigns

Remember, remember, the fifth of November, 

The gunpowder treason and plot; 

I know of no reason why gunpowder treason 

Should ever be forgot.

Chances are you’ve heard the rhyme, at the very least in V for Vendetta, as everyone surely knows the devious true story behind the happy celebration of Bonfire Night. But these days we’re not so much reminded of the history of the day as we are about fireworks and hot dogs. Whilst there are plenty of adverts around for the event, ranging from locations of public bonfires to fireworks that will light up the night sky, we’re taking a look at some interesting campaigns that focus on public safety and awareness.

Anyone who owns a cat or dog will know that this time of year can be a bit scary for household pets, so the RSPCA shares information annually regarding how to keep them safe and happy. This video from 2016 gives advice that you might not otherwise consider, such as walking your dog during daylight hours and creating a hiding place for them indoors.

In 2015, Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service decided to really highlight the risks of fireworks and bonfires. But rather than a list of tips, they created a short film specifically for secondary school students, dramatising unfortunate events that had actually occurred in the region over the years. It’s a powerful and hard-hitting campaign that could actually save lives.

Everyone loves the whizz-bang of a firework, or do they? It’s easy for us all to get caught up in the fun and forget that some people may find them confusing and scary, as the National Autistic Society points out on its website. By putting together a checklist for parents of autistic children, the organisation is simultaneously helping everyone to understand the condition in greater detail and allowing young people with autism to get involved in events.

Children should know about fire safety from a young age, not only in general but specifically around Bonfire Night too. So who better to give tips that children can relate to than Fireman Sam and his friends in Pontypandy? The video includes the usual shenanigans that you’d expect from the show, with plenty of friendly Welsh banter to help kids remember important information.

You may have built the safest bonfire for miles around and know exactly how to use fireworks and sparklers without causing hazards, but there’s one thing you may have forgotten. Luckily, the British Hedgehog Preservation Society is here to remind us to check bonfires carefully for sleeping hedgehogs before lighting. They even use #rememberhedgehogs on social media, creating an ongoing conversation that anyone can join.

What are you doing for Bonfire Night? Share your snaps with us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.