With Summer already seemingly a distant memory we look forward to the fun that the Autumn season brings. One of the much-loved dates in East Sussex is Bonfire Night with incredible East Sussex firework displays organised throughout the county. As we ‘Remember, Remember the fifth of November’, many towns and villages celebrate with daring torchlight processions and colourful firework displays on various dates between September and November. Big or Small, many towns and villages get involved to hold some of the best shows in the whole of the UK.

Why is bonfire night so popular in East Sussex? History and traditions. The night not only celebrates Guy Fawkes’s plot to blow up parliament but also the burning of 17 Protestant martyrs in Lewes’s High Street from 1555 to 1557. The day was adopted by early Bonfire ‘gangs’ (modern-day societies) as a day where civil disobedience was begrudgingly tolerated. As the years moved forward, the day evolved towards protesting authority.

Today in East Sussex, there’s still a cheeky hint of protest in the air, but the main draw is the theatrical storytelling of the times when East Sussex towns ‘Burned for good’ with awe-inspiring torchlight processions and amazing firework displays. Instead of protesting, today’s societies use the events as a platform to raise much-needed funds for local charities, whilst putting on fantastic displays for the local communities.

East Sussex firework displays 2023

To find a display near you, take a look at our helpful list below:

Battle fireworks display
When: 4 Nov 2023
Where: Abbey Green, Battle Abbey

Chailey fireworks display
When: 11 Nov 2023
Where: Chailey Common

Crowborough Firework Display
When: 4 Nov 2023 (6pm)
Where: Goldsmiths Recreation Ground, Crowborough

East Hoathly and Halland fireworks display
When: 11 Nov 2023
Where: East Hoathly playing fields, East Hoathly

Eastbourne firework display
When: 7 Oct 2023
Where: Grand Parade, Eastbourne

Ewhurst & Staple Cross firework display
When: 28 Oct 2023
Where: Staplecross Village

Firle fireworks display
When: 28 October 2023
Where: Firle Place, Firle

Hailsham fireworks display
When: 21 October 2023
Where: Recreation Ground, Hailsham

Hastings fireworks display
When: 14 Oct 2023
Where: Hastings Beach (Pelham Place Car Park)

Heathfield fireworks display
When: 14 Oct 2023
Where: Sheepsetting Lane, Heathfield

Isfield & Little Horsted firework display
When: 27 Oct 2023
Where: Isfield Community Enterprise field, Isfield

Lewes celebrations and fireworks displays
When: 4 Nov 2023
Where: Lewes Town Centre

Newhaven fireworks display
When: 11 Nov 2023
Where: South Heighton Recreation Ground, Newhaven

Newick fireworks display
When: 28 Oct 2023
Where: Village Green, Newick

Northiam fireworks display
When: 7 Oct 2023
Where: Northiam playing fields

Robertsbridge fireworks display
When: 18 Nov 2023
Where: Recreation ground, Robertsbridge

Rotherfield and Markcross fireworks display
When: 7 Oct 2023
Where: Rotherfield Road/Church Road, Rotherfield

Rye fireworks display
When: 11 Nov 2023
Where: The Quay, Rye Town Centre

Seaford fireworks display
21 Oct 2023
Where: Martello Fields, Seaford

Choose Local

East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service would like you to “Choose Local” this bonfire season, supporting locally organised events rather than setting off fireworks or having bonfires in your own gardens.

Firework safety

As in all years, it is much safer to enjoy bonfire night at one of the locally organised East Sussex firework displays, but if you if you are still thinking of having your own display at home, or using sparklers, read our top tips for enjoying fireworks safely or read the firework safety advice from Rospa.

Lewes bonfire

The night is run by local bonfire societies and includes a number of displays and processions. These usually involve significant amounts of fireworks and attract large crowds.

There are growing concerns that more people than usual will come to Lewes because this year’s event falls on a Saturday. Combined with significant amounts of fireworks, this presents a unique challenge to the multi-agency group tasked with ensuring public safety. We are therefore asking that you find alternative events rather than travel to Lewes.