Blackpool Illuminations Switch-On 2021 live stream: Watch here for free

Tonight, the Illuminations will be turned on – marking a first in the world famous Lights show’s 142 year history.

Friday, 3rd September 2021, 5:29 pm
Updated Friday, 3rd September 2021, 5:32 pm

Millions of visitors – and plenty of residents – will drive, walk, cycle, jog, and be taken on a landau ride below the glistening, glowing bulbs that straddle the Golden Mile until early next year, with the annual display extended over Christmas and New Year for the first time.

The final preparations were this morning underway, before dancing queen Shirley Ballas etches her name in the history books when she pulls the lever at the Switch-On ceremony.

Similar to last year, during the height of the pandemic, viewers can tune in from home.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Both VisitBlackpool and MTV will stream performances by KSI, Ella Henderson, The Wombats, and Wes Nelson perform - and you can watch it here for free from 8pm.

But, marking another step closer to normality, a 1,500-strong audience – chosen at random after a ballot – will be welcomed into the historic venue for what organisers pledged will be an “unforgettable night”.

They will see television and radio presenter Becca Dudley host proceedings – before the Tower lights up over their heads as a signal of joy and newfound excitement in a world recovering from Covid and all of its consequences, including isolation, unhappiness, and grief.

As well as thrilling holidaymakers and day-trippers over the festive season, the Illuminations also feature a number of other firsts.

Final preparations were underway for the Blackpool Illuminations Switch-On earlier this evening (Picture: Dan Martino for The Gazette)

They include a nightly laser show called Astral Dreams. Designed by local man Jack Irvings, it will be projected onto the Tower.

Household favourite Laurence Llewelyn Bowen will also show off a water feature called Venus Remixed at South Beach. The Changing Rooms star, who is the Lights’s creative chief, said: “This year, perhaps more than any other year, switching on Blackpool’s Illuminations marks an important moment of brightness as the country moves into autumn and winter.

"Turning the Lights on has always inspired an optimism and positivity of which Blackpool is understandably proud.”

It is thanks to our loyal readers that we can continue to provide the trusted news, analysis and insight that matters to you. For unlimited access to our unrivalled local reporting, you can take out a subscription here and help support the work of our dedicated team of reporters.