Name: Geoff and Maureen Burrow
Bonfire Society: Lewes Borough
Position: In our time we’ve filled nearly every post apart from Chair.
Years in society: Geoff - 15 years in Borough, Maureen 30 years. Both have been in Bonfire all their lives.
What’s Bonfire Night in Lewes all about? You’ve got to be born and bred in Lewes to really understand it. It’s a tradition, it’s a hobby and it’s a way of life. It’s like being part of a club, but it’s a very big club. We have made friends with a number of people from outlying societies over the years.
Highlight of Bonfire Night so far? That’s a difficult question. The Bonfire Night celebrations are all very formulaic, so they all blend into one in the memory. The 400th celebrations were special, but essentially we’re happy if everything runs smoothly. For us the highlight of the night isn’t the bonfires and fireworks, it’s the procession. That’s what Bonfire Night is all about. And the Death March in particular.
What will you be dressed like? We will be dressed as Zulu Warriors, our First Pioneer costumes. Which head-dresses we wear depends on the weather. We have a number up in the attic. It would have to be a clear, windless night for us to wear the biggest, most extravagant ones.
Which society do you feel most rivalry with? There’s always a bit of secrecy and rivalry about the tableaux and effigies. There’s a bit of friendly rivalry in the costumes too. Cliffe like to think they’re the best society, but we’ve won the Pioneer Cup five years running, so that’s got to mean something. At the end of the day the rivalry isn’t serious. We’ve got friends and relations in all the different societies.