Burning the Clocks is a unique festival of light and art that brings the city of Brighton together to mark the Winter Solstice.

The festival was created in 1994 by the award-winning community arts charity, Same Sky, as a way to celebrate the holiday spirit regardless of attendees and travelers' religious beliefs. And recently, it also has adopted the purpose of rebellion against the modern day excess of holiday commercialism.

Leading up to the event, people are encouraged to create their own unique lanterns made from willow canes or bamboo and tissue paper. Every year the organizers come up with a different theme related to the concept of time, ensuring new and exciting lantern creations.

Lantern making workshops are held ahead of the event for homeless youth and other disadvantaged locals. The spirit of giving is truly emphasized as they are encouraged to create something they can be proud of, as well as promote passion and the sense of community united through art.

Participants of the Burning The Clock parade meet at the Corn Exchange. From here, the lanterns are checked by officials to make sure the parade runs safely and smoothly. With lanterns lit the spectacle begins as the crowd of around 2,000 people representing all ages make their way down New Road.

The streets are lined with eager spectators who cheer as the parade of light winds its way through the streets and down to the storefront. In total, some 20,000 spectators brave the cold to witness this motley procession of white shapes illuminating the darkness of the longest night for the year. And after the last group of the parade arrives at the beach to the beating of drums, the fire show springs to action.

The second phase of the festival is where people, one by one, pass their handmade, combustible lanterns into a bonfire. The burning lanterns are purposed to carry the hopes and dreams of the participant for the year to come. And as the music builds, the larger lanterns are ignited. The evening ends at around 8pm with a crescendo of fireworks exploding over the coastline.