A history of Beltane and the Night Watch

This page will have an account of the history of the Torchies, Stewards and Night Watch.


First Beltane? event, approximately 300 people attend.


Approximately 3,000 people attend.


The first year of the Samhuinn Fire Festival.


Approximately 10,000 people attend.


Curfew on the Hill - performers permitted to stay up late if quiet and out of sight.


No BFS performance on Calton Hill. Instead, a club night at the Venue, and a BFS-only performance at an out-of-town venue.


Beltane charges admission for the first time due to required council licences. The event finishes on the hill at 1am sharp. 8000 atendees. ref


The Night Watch was formed. Beltane sells out for the first time with an attendance of 12,000. Introduction of the Fire Guard?


Beltane sells out for the first time with an attendance of 12,000(correct value?). Major changes to the procession: elemental points no longer join on the end of the main procession as it leaves their point, but stay and perform for a while longer before moving on to the Acropolis for a short performance before moving on to the stage. Introduction of guard groups for the rest of the points? The event is awarded a special licence fee reduction to 1000. Samhuinn finishes on The Mound as Parliament Square is out of action this year.


Beltane's 20th anniversary (for some values of 20)! The Red Men gain their own guard group.


  • When did the torchies start?
  • When did the stewards start?
  • When for BFS?
  • When for the points?