Bonfire Night Holborns

Surrey retailer Dean Holborn has smashed his target of raising £10,000 for local charities at his annual bonfire night.

Raising a massive £18,000 for good causes this year, Dean levelled up the size of the event and the money raised.

Dean has been running the Bonfire Nights for 14 years and estimates that he’s raised over £100,000 for community causes over that time. “Our previous record was £12,000 net profit for charity so it’s great to beat that!”

The event was organised by Dean who arranges the stock, entertainment and logistics of the Bonfire Night. He says that while it can take up a lot of time, it’s well worth it. “The day of and the day before, I’m working on it full time but I’ve spent lots of evenings working on it at home. It’s a great thing to do for the community – it raises money for the area and provides a fun and cheap night out for everyone.”

“Independent retailers can use community work to create a real point of difference to the competition. We’re always talking about being at the heart of communities but events like these are opportunities to do something to help our areas.”

Dean recently joined the Parish Council, and says that while it’s more work on top of a busy schedule, it enables him to get a better view of the issue affecting the community. “I’m better off being on it than not and it means I can find out what’s coming up in the area more easily plus you can better understand how the system works and explain it to others.”

He advises any retailer looking to increase their work in the community to reach out to groups that might need support or have contacts. “You local Parent Teachers Friends Association (PTFA) should be your first port of call. They’re vital to communities plus schools are always looking to organise events and have the space to hold them so ask if they have anything coming up or if they would like help.”

Dean adds that retailers should explore existing contacts to see who can help. “A lot of it boils down to who you know, and if you can get someone in to provide some help in a specific area, it’s easier than doing it yourself.”