Should Bonfire Night be banned?

Finbar10

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Cork still has Bonfire Night on the 23rd of June. It's still a fairly big thing and seems to go back many centuries, being linked to the Celtic Midsummer's Eve (though given a bit of a Christian make-over being associated with St. John's Eve). And still goes on in some other parts of the country too. Have good childhood memories of the things (typically there'd be several going in the locality) and perhaps a bit of a plume of black smoke over the city that night! :)



I guess it must be a bit of a nightmare for fire services. There has been a trend in recent year's for the local council to organize officially designated and rather sanitized Bonfire Night events.

However, the trend seems to be to want to stamp out the night entirely. I see local councillor Chris O'Leary (Sinn Féin, formerly in the Greens) is calling for a complete end to these in an article in today's Evening Echo (the main Cork City evening newspaper).

Sinn Féin councillor Chris O’Leary criticised City Hall for sending ‘contradictory’ messages by hosting its own ‘family-fun’ bonfires while clamping down on illegal fires.

Tonight is St John’s Eve, a night marked by bonfires throughout Cork city. The tradition is also practised in Spain and Scandinavia but in few other places in Ireland.
“People tell me that it is about tradition but traditions change,” he said.
“Some are outdated and what was acceptable before is not anymore. We are in the midst of a major climate challenge. We have signed up to make changes to fight this and what is happening at these bonfires entirely contradicts this. We need to mark this celebration in a non-fire manner; we can’t just turn a blind eye to some laws and not others.”
What do people, particularly Corkonians, think of all this? An outdated anti-environmental dangerous practice that should be ended in the modern times? Or just more of the nanny state trying to protect us and not caring for tradition?

Out of curiosity, do people still have bonfires in other parts of the country on St. John's Eve?
 


recedite

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Does not exist at all in the east.
I have experienced it in the west as gangs of teenagers going on all night drinking binges around a camp fire.
Its an ancient tradition that has degenerated somewhat.
 

Gaston

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There was a time when it was a family friendly event. At least up my way anyhow. The 'bonnas' I recall as a kid were real community get togethers that were properly supervised largely by the womenfolk, and back then the fuel for the bonfires we had was wood (trees, pallets, etc)

In more recent years all it has become is an annual opportunity for every scumbag and fly tipper to burn their rubbish and in the process create a disgusting mix of toxic plumes of smoke around the city which you'd be well advised to avoid.

Ban it I say!
 

Gin Soaked

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Does not exist at all in the east.
I have experienced it in the west as gangs of teenagers going on all night drinking binges around a camp fire.
Its an ancient tradition that has degenerated somewhat.
Never heard of this as a thing....
 

Lumpy Talbot

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No
I caught a glimpse of something that I'd heard of before- I think it was something like 'Sceilig Night' which appeared to be something of a debauch. Must look that up but it seems to have been popular in Cork some hundreds of years ago.

I'm pretty sure that 'bonfire night' is an Anglicisation of the ancient 'Bealtaine' or 'Beltane' night which was celebrated at midsummer across the UK and Ireland and probably the more celtic areas of the continent for milennia.

The 'st john's eve' tag will be one of those awkward attempts to take over something far older in recent times.
 

ergo2

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Still a strong tradition in Mayo. Nowadays more usual is villages and suburbs rather than major community fires in towns.

Tyres and other dioxin creating material no longer used.

They tend to be neighbourhood community events/barbecues. Those attendiing - neighbours and friends -behave responsibly
 

Lumpy Talbot

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No
It would be a pity to see it go as the Bealtaine fires were an ancient tradition. I think there is a case for regulation but not banning.
 

Finbar10

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It would be a pity to see it go as the Bealtaine fires were an ancient tradition. I think there is a case for regulation but not banning.
This seems to be originally a Celtic thing (similar midsummer fires in other Celtic countries) and, therefore, probably goes back a really long way. No doubt some officials from next door to City Hall in the Fire Department keep telling Chris O'Leary how awful it all is. Still, IMO it would indeed be a pity if this came to an end (probably some suitable arrangements could be found to keep the thing going).
 

Dedogs

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Cork still has Bonfire Night on the 23rd of June. It's still a fairly big thing and seems to go back many centuries, being linked to the Celtic Midsummer's Eve (though given a bit of a Christian make-over being associated with St. John's Eve). And still goes on in some other parts of the country too. Have good childhood memories of the things (typically there'd be several going in the locality) and perhaps a bit of a plume of black smoke over the city that night! :)



I guess it must be a bit of a nightmare for fire services. There has been a trend in recent year's for the local council to organize officially designated and rather sanitized Bonfire Night events.

However, the trend seems to be to want to stamp out the night entirely. I see local councillor Chris O'Leary (Sinn Féin, formerly in the Greens) is calling for a complete end to these in an article in today's Evening Echo (the main Cork City evening newspaper).





What do people, particularly Corkonians, think of all this? An outdated anti-environmental dangerous practice that should be ended in the modern times? Or just more of the nanny state trying to protect us and not caring for tradition?

Out of curiosity, do people still have bonfires in other parts of the country on St. John's Eve?
handy way of gettin rid of a load of rubbish all the same.... :):):)
 

Lúidín

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The annual burning of the tyres and silage wrap is still observed all along the west coast in honour of St John, an event also celebrated in Spain but without the toxic element.
 

Watcher2

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I'm from the South West, living in the East for quite a few years now. It was never a thing on 23 June as far as I can remember. But if its anything like Halloween and the disgrace of the bonfire activities on that night (and I have no reason to believe its any different as regards anti social behaviour), yes indeed, they should be stamped out. Its a fvcking disgrace.
 

Half Nelson

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Still do it in my neck of the woods - bonfire, dancing naked, virgin sacrifice (1 of), lots of home brew... usual stuff..

might give it a miss this year.
 

redhead

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Still do it in my neck of the woods - bonfire, dancing naked, virgin sacrifice (1 of), lots of home brew... usual stuff..

might give it a miss this year.
Well, yes, if the virgin got pregnant, she now has options...
 

Lumpy Talbot

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No
Looked up what I could find on Skellig Night which was a sort of night of accepted mayhem,banging pots and making noise, possibly related back to the driving out of spirits.

Happened on what the more recent spirit-hunters would call Shrove Tuesday in March.
 

brigg

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In Dublin, bonfire season traditionally starts around October 1st, as gangs of youths start collecting for Halloween bonfires, but then decide they can't wait that long.
 
D

Deleted member 51920

In Dublin, bonfire season traditionally starts around October 1st, as gangs of youths start collecting for Halloween bonfires, but then decide they can't wait that long.
Thats midwinter
Another celebration
 

Ramon Mercadar

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Cork still has Bonfire Night on the 23rd of June. It's still a fairly big thing and seems to go back many centuries, being linked to the Celtic Midsummer's Eve (though given a bit of a Christian make-over being associated with St. John's Eve). And still goes on in some other parts of the country too. Have good childhood memories of the things (typically there'd be several going in the locality) and perhaps a bit of a plume of black smoke over the city that night! :)



I guess it must be a bit of a nightmare for fire services. There has been a trend in recent year's for the local council to organize officially designated and rather sanitized Bonfire Night events.

However, the trend seems to be to want to stamp out the night entirely. I see local councillor Chris O'Leary (Sinn Féin, formerly in the Greens) is calling for a complete end to these in an article in today's Evening Echo (the main Cork City evening newspaper).





What do people, particularly Corkonians, think of all this? An outdated anti-environmental dangerous practice that should be ended in the modern times? Or just more of the nanny state trying to protect us and not caring for tradition?

Out of curiosity, do people still have bonfires in other parts of the country on St. John's Eve?
With a bit of luck the entire kip might burn down. Finish whgat tje Black n Tans only half did.
 

ergo2

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The annual burning of the tyres and silage wrap is still observed all along the west coast in honour of St John, an event also celebrated in Spain but without the toxic element.
Disagree with you as regards Mayo. The dangers of dioxins from tyres, plastic etc have been well publicised by the Fire Officers.
 


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