Guy Fawkes Night
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The following story was contributed by Kenny Crawford

'' Remember, remember, the fifth of November, gunpowder, treason and plot '' This little phrase  is the first line of a poem associated with a quaint British practice of setting off explosive devices in public areas on Guy Fawkes night [ 5th. November ]. Guy Fawkes night dates back centuries to when a guy named Guy Fawkes and his chums decided to blow up the Houses of Parliament when the house was 'sitting' The idea being they would [ a ] get rid off the government and [ b ] install their own. The plot was only discovered at the last minute, and Guy and the boys suffered torture and finally death. Something to celebrate then.

I pick up the story when I am about seven years old. Guy Fawkes night, [spelt Fox at that time, but only by me ] consisted of every boy in Maybole having spent the following week collecting firewood to build a huge bonfire. Some boys would make an effigy of Guy [ this would be sat on top of the bonfire on the night of the fifth.] and go around Maybole with their 'Guy ' on a cart, or bogey, asking adults for ''a penny for the Guy, please mister ''. The proceeds were to be spent on purchasing fireworks. So as soon as it got dark the bonfire was lit, there would be many bonfires, all over Maybole. The fireworks lit and hoo-ray ! what a great night.

That was what was meant to happen. In reality no boys that I knew were going to make a doll far less be seen pushing it around the streets. Fireworks were bought with pocket money from your parents, or if that failed, searching likely places for empty Lemonade bottles and returning these to a shop for the refund,[ a penny ]. The first fireworks were let off around the town as soon as they went on sale [ mid-October]. The ones in the know, knew that you never built your bonfire too early, as sure as hell, lads from another part of town infiltrated and set light to your work !

It was not unknown for boys to wake up on the morning of the fifth of November to find that the bonfire on their patch was no more. As dead as a ' Norwegian Blue' Parrot, this bonfire is no more. I don't think it was the trend then to read the instructions on the explosives that were on sale. It was more likely one was set off and depending upon the factors, noise level, height of flight, explosive strength, it was then decided which was the most inapt use for said device, and thereafter, put it into such unsafe operation. E.g. Rockets fired sideways not upwards, Bangers in a tin can outside the dog owners house. I cannot believe that there were not more accidents then. Now it is even worse.

There are rockets on sale to the public that Von Braun would have been proud to have owned. They go higher than his first Atlas efforts, and the end explosions are comparable. The 'Axis of Evil ' don't bother going to dodgy arms sales, they just visit here and buy boxes from the 'Armageddon' fireworks range. I don't know how many millions of pounds of fireworks have gone up in smoke but I guess it would be enough to write off the national debt of a small country [Britain?] Thank God it only comes round once a year !

Link to more about Guy Fawlkes Night. 

Full Text of the 'Remember Remember' Rhyme

Remember, remember the fifth of November
Gunpowder, treason and plot.
I see no reason why gunpowder treason
Should ever be forgot.
Guy Fawkes, Guy Fawkes
'Twas his intent
To blow up the King and the Parliament
Three score barrels of powder below
Poor old England to overthrow
By God's providence he was catched
With a dark lantern and burning match.
Holloa boys, holloa boys,
Ring the bells ring
Holloa boys, holloa boys,
Goda save the King!
Hip hip hooray
Hip hip horray.