BURGESS HILL’s big bonfire and fireworks carnival night returns on Saturday evening with the prospect of a bumper turnout.
More than 4,000 torches have been made by volunteers in expectation of a lot of other societies swelling the ranks during the two processions through the streets of the town.
A spokesman for organisers Burgess Hill Bonfire Society said: “We have more than 4,000 torches made for this year, because as our event didn’t happen last year we are expecting a lot of other Bonfire Societies to attend our night.”
The first torchlit procession will start at Cyprus Road car park at 7.30pm, heading on to Crescent Way, Crescent Road, Mill Road, Cyprus Road, Church Road, up Station Road and stopping at Silverdale Road at approximately 8.20pm.
The second, or Grand Procession, will start off from Silverdale Road about 8.30pm, down Station Road, Upper Church Road, Crescent Way, Lower Church Road, Royal George Road, turning up Fairfield Road and then down Western Road, finishing at the fire site of Fairfield Recreation Ground.
The firework display and the bonfire will take place at approximately 9.45pm.
Collectors on the route will raise money for four local charities.
They are Hope in the Valley Riding for the Disabled, Action for Deafness, Cancervive and Fairfield Community Centre (Boys’ Club).
From today Benson’s Fun Fair will be at Fairfield Road to help entertain the crowds.
Last year’s bonfire was called off because the society did not have enough help to meet the standards needed for its staging.
The bonfire movement in Burgess Hill was first started in September 1894, with meetings being held in the Burgess Hill Inn, Keymer Road, where some of the 2012 bonfire characters will stop for a drink.
The Burgess Hill Bonfire Society later adopted smugglers and Aztec costumes, and some are pictured on page one.