Organisers of the Littlehampton Bonfire celebrations are asking people to dig deep so they can raise more than £10,000.
Littlehampton Bonfire Society stages its Traditional Bonfire Night on Saturday, in celebration of the 412th anniversary of the foiling of the attempt by Guy Fawkes and his fellow conspirators to blow up the Houses of Parliament.
Society treasurer Richard Cooper said: “We are proud that despite ever increasing costs of staging our event, every penny of our collection continues to go to the charities and good causes we support.
“We charge no entry fee, but we do ask spectators to show their support by donating as much as they are able to our collection buckets, and hope that this year each spectator will be able to give at least £1.
“We can accept your old £1 coins, so please dig them out from purses, money jars and the back of sofas.
“We hold the record of £9,283 for the all-time highest street collection at any Sussex bonfire and carnival celebrations. We believe that a £10,000 street collection should be possible in Littlehampton – please help us to achieve this.”
Events kick off on Saturday with two dignity charity fair organs playing in the town centre during the day.
The society’s traditional poppy wreath will later be laid at the war memorial during a short service lead by the Reverend Norman Croft with music provided by The City of Coventry Corps of Drums in their debut appearance at the event.
The Grand Torchlight Procession will feature more than 50 entries from the south. Carnival associations from Ventnor and Ryde on the Isle of Wight will be making the trip across The Solent with their elaborate floats.
Littlehampton Bonfire Society, lead by its native American pioneers and supported by members in costumes from the Tudor era and beyond, will head up the torchlight section of the parade. They will be followed by visiting bonfire and carnival societies from Sussex and Kent, including the members of Phoenix, which will be attempting to retain the title of best-dressed visiting society.
An increased contingent of steam engines this year comprises six full size and five miniature engines, giving spectators the rare opportunity to witness steam on the road after dark. Six marching bands will provide the music. The lighting of the bonfire by the society’s Commander-in-Chief, John Burchfield, will be followed by the grand aerial firework display. William Cole’s family funfair will be open on the Promenade from 2pm.
Timings can be found in the bonfire programmes, visit littlehamptonbonfiresociety.co.uk for stockists.