THE tradition of building bonfires and burning an effigy of Guy Fawkes goes back to 1605.

It was encouraged as a celebration of the failed attempt by Fawkes and his co-conspirators to blow up the Houses of Parliament along with King James the Sixth.

These were the good old days when public displays of political unrest were welcomed and even encouraged by the UK Government.

Over time many effigies have been used and the original cause for celebration has faded.

Fawkes has been congratulated as being “the last man to enter parliament with good intentions” and it is almost as if the bonfire and accompanying fireworks are a celebration of him and his interests rather a celebration of their failure.

The original gunpowder plot was set to coincide with the state opening of parliament and the King Speech because the exact whereabouts of the King and members of House of Lords would be known and that made them easy targets.

These days for most people it’s more about a fun family event than any political statement. This year the state opening will be on the seventh of November and I am not expecting any fireworks, just a dull speech, written by a dull prime minister that his own party didn't vote for and for whom bland has become the norm.

Locally, we won’t be enjoying public firework displays because the council can’t afford to fund them.

Years of UK Government austerity has seen to that.

I sincerely hope that the predictable increase in smaller events do not result in an increase in the number of call outs to the emergency services and that every precaution is taken to ensure the safety of those involved.

By this time next year, we should have stronger legislation in place to control the sale of fireworks and hopefully be in a position to reinstate public events for all.

In the meantime, please be considerate of those that may be alarmed by loud bangs and keep your pets safe too.