Water and fire don’t usually mix, so what’s a boat-lover to do when called upon to celebrate Guy Fawkes night? Here are three ways to enjoy this week’s explosive celebrations on London's waterways.

1) Floating Cinema

On Saturday 8th November Newton’s Floating Cinema is hosting an afternoon of tours and screenings exploring the waterways of East London. There will be a tour of the Olympic park’s waterways and an opportunity to watch a series of short films that that celebrate the history and heritage of the waterways in London. The programme begins at midday and booking is advisable. Find out more at the floating cinema website.

2) Flotilla and Fireworks

Also on Saturday is The 2014 Lord Mayor’s Show, a London tradition that is now in it’s 799th year! It begins with a river pageant and then the Lord Mayor's procession sets off from Mansion House at 11am. The finale of the day is the fireworks display on the River Thames at 5.15pm, between Waterloo and Blackfriars bridges. The costumes and floats in the parade are always a stunning spectacle and there’s a great atmosphere. There’s more information on the Lord Mayor’s Show website.

3) Bonfire Treats on Board

If you like to take a seasonal snack out with you on bonfire night you could try making Bonfire Toffee. It’s made from butter, molasses, sugar and sometimes white vinegar and can also be known as Plot toffee or treacle toffee.

Alternatively, Yorkshire Parkin is a kind of gingerbread that originates from Yorkshire; just as Guy Fawkes was originally from Yorkshire. It’s made from oatmeal which gives it a dense, chewy texture and needs at least three days to mature after making. Either of these are perfect treats for Guy Fawkes Night, alongside the now popular toffee apples or toasted marshmallows.

Another standard supper to be baked on the English bonfire is a jacket potato, or wait until you get home for the traditionally hearty Shepherd’s Pie. I like a bit of hot chocolate with whisky in it, and have taken that to the bonfire in a thermos flask before. You could also take home-made soup, which might fill you up more than the hot chocolate.

Of course there’s nothing like toasted marshmallows and other winter treats beside your own wood-burning stove on your boat. Easily search for a second hand boat within your price range using our search facility. Boats for sale.

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Peggy Melmoth


Image credit: Thanks to Corey C on Flickr for making this image available under a Creative Commons licence.

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