PAUL O’BRIEN: Show your support on bonfire night

It’s great to be back writing my column after a few weeks’ sabbatical, while we took the opportunity to refit our shop, and with the clocks going back it marks the start of darker nights and one of our favourite nights in Worthing – bonfire night!

With this weekend’s celebrations falling on a Saturday, and with the weather forecast looking favourable, we could welcome a record crowd to the town centre for the evening.

With South Street closed for a market from 10am, a children’s lantern parade, fun fair, live music stage and the ever-impressive fireworks later in the evening, this free event will hopefully be an absolute cracker in our ever-improving events calendar.

I know the team at Barties and Worthing Lions work tirelessly to create a magical evening I urge you all to put a little loose change in the collection buckets that will be jangling around throughout the evening.

It goes a long way to ensuring that the event can not only continue to run year on year, but improve and evolve with new themes and events.

Many shops and eateries in the town will be staying open into the late evening hours, so if you are looking for a bite to eat or a cup of tea then come and have a look around the town between the shows.

We will have our doors open until at least 10pm, like many others, and it would be great to see you!

On top of this there has been a raft of shops opening in the town over the past few weeks with at least ten more under offer – including one of the town’s “white elephants”, the old Summerfield store in the Guildbourne Centre.

With national chains Peacocks and Poundworld Extra newly-opened alongside a raft of independents, our town will hopefully fall under the five per cent empty shops rate (compared to the national average of ten per cent) for the first time in years.

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