A torchlight procession around the hill fort marked 5 November on Ham Hill, ending at the Stone Circle with a massive bonfire that lit up the night sky. 250 people took part in the free event thought up by the rangers following the popularity of the summer 2012 Jubilee beacon.
ITV’s News crew attending was a last minute surprise that added to the excitement.
Rangers and volunteers had built the fire actually on the day, to protect wildlife that might have crawled in for hibernation if it had been made over a longer period. Volunteers created a very scary guy and from 5pm people joined together in procession to the stone circle, with nightline torches in jars.
Comments about the event included: “best bonfire event we have ever been to” and – from a mum – “it is really lovely to go to a special place with atmosphere and not have fireworks, as my children are frightened of them. We had the fun and excitement of the dark and the fire without the fear!”
Councillor Sylvia Seal, SSDC Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Culture, said: “The people, place and bonfire combined to make a dramatic and exciting atmosphere. Our rangers and volunteers did a great job organising this new event and ITV News turning up made it an extra special occasion for everyone. Thank you to everyone in the community for joining in with such enthusiasm.”