Calderdale’s benevolent community volunteers have been acknowledged for their collaborative efforts in ensuring a secure and tranquil bonfire weekend in November 2023.

On the 30th of November, a special event took place at Halifax Town Hall, hosted by Calderdale Council, West Yorkshire Police, and West Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service, to express gratitude to those who went above and beyond to maintain safety and enjoyment during bonfire celebrations.

Calderdale’s Community Safety Partnership, comprising the Council, Police, Fire & Rescue Service, and other stakeholders, consistently implements plans to guarantee a safe Halloween and Bonfire Night each year. This year, heightened preparations were undertaken in response to severe disturbances in a Halifax area on November 5, 2022.

As part of these preparations, local volunteers and community groups generously participated in collaborative efforts. They dedicated their time to reassuring communities, disseminating crucial bonfire safety messages, and organising positive events for local residents.

At the thank you event, the Mayor of Calderdale, Cllr Ashley Evans, praised the “phenomenal community spirit, drive and determination, extensive planning, months of engagement on residents’ doorsteps, inspiring activities and exemplary collaborative work between communities, voluntary groups and organisations such as the Council and emergency services.”

The Mayor presented certificates to volunteers and representatives from local community groups for their fantastic contribution to a positive bonfire experience for all.

Cllr Jenny Lynn, Calderdale Council’s Cabinet Member for Public Services and Communities, said; “The kindness of Calderdale’s communities shone through yet again. Local volunteers and organisations did what they do best – pulling together as a partnership to make our borough a better place for everyone.

“We know that some local residents were concerned about possible anti-social behaviour during bonfire weekend. The team pulled out all the stops, working weekends and nights, to help everyone enjoy a safe and calm celebration. It’s wonderful that they have been formally recognised for their efforts.”

Calderdale District Commander Chief Superintendent Michael Brown of West Yorkshire Police said; “It has been brilliant to see the community of Calderdale pull together to ensure those living and visiting the district could enjoy Bonfire Night safely and without disruption or disorder.

“The partnership approach and invaluable support from key community members this year resulted in a largely peaceful and safe evening for all. I want to thank everyone who played their part in making this possible.

“It cannot be underestimated just how crucial these groups are in the wider partnership effort to keep our communities safe and feeling safe.”

Assistant District Commander for Calderdale, Dan Butterfield, said; “We saw a mainly peaceful and celebratory bonfire period in Calderdale and that’s in large part thanks to the fantastic community effort by groups and volunteers like the ones celebrated here.

“We’d love to reiterate our thanks for everyone who worked so hard to keep Calderdale safe and we look forward to continuing this effort into 2024 and beyond.”