Volunteers thanked for keeping Calderdale safe

Community thank you event

Calderdale’s kind community volunteers have been thanked for their partnership work to ensure a safe and peaceful bonfire weekend in November 2023.

On Thursday 30 November, Calderdale Council, West Yorkshire Police and West Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service held a special event at Halifax Town Hall, to recognise those who went the extra mile to keep bonfire celebrations safe and enjoyable.

The Council, the Police, the Fire & Rescue Service and other members of Calderdale’s Community Safety Partnership always have plans in place to ensure a safe Halloween and Bonfire Night period each year. Preparations were stepped up this year following serious disorder that took place in an area of Halifax on 5 November 2022. 

As part of these plans, local volunteers and community groups kindly joined in with partnership efforts. They gave their time to help reassure communities, share important bonfire safety messages and put on positive events for local people to enjoy. 

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 keeping 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.”

Kindness and resilience are key themes of the Vision 2024 for Calderdale. The year 2024 marks Calderdale’s 50th birthday and there isn’t long to go. Where do we want to be by 2024? Find out more at

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