Preston's Thank You Parade: last night hundreds took part in the celebratory event to thank key workers
Last night the sounds of drums, music, emergency sirens, claxons and cheering Prestonians filled the city streets for Preston's Thank you Parade.
It may have been non-stop rain all evening, but that didn’t dampen the spirits of Prestonians last night, who turned up to the city centre in their hundreds for Preston's Thank you Parade.
The torchlight parade, which was followed by a fireworks display, formed part of the finale of Lancashire Encounter, and was designed as a tribute to key workers and a celebration of the city's community spirit.
Setting off from Moor Park at 7:30 pm, the torchlight parade made it's way down Deepdale Road, Church Street, Lancaster Road, Lord Street and Tithebarn Street, cheered on by members of the public.
The procession, which had the theme of light, included a mix of vehicles and walking participants, with a range of Prestonian key worker organisations, businesses and groups being joined by acts from across Preston and further afield.
The highlights included the Preston Caribbean Carnival, Jabberwocky, an animated and illuminated mobile mechanical puppet, and Dragon Heart Beats, a theatrical show that involved a dragon breathing fire and roaring.
The street dancers of Preston City Mela and calypso musicians from Cacophony Arkestra also performed, as did Projector Bikes, a pair of interactive tricycles who roamed the streets projecting animations on the surroundings as they went.
The torchlight parade then concluded at Preston Bus Station, where the city's mayor, councillor Javed Iqbal, addressed damp but cheering crowds, who were eagerly awaiting the first set of fireworks.
At 9 pm, the fireworks, were finally set off from three sites across the city centre so that people could see them from wherever they watched the parade.
Commissioned as part of the city's Welcome Back Fun action plan, the fireworks were funded by the European Regional Development Fund, through the Department for Communities and Local Government.
Taking to Twitter, the Preston City Council said: "Thank you to every participant, performer, organiser and spectator for a brilliant evening making #Preston proud. And thank you to the ERDF and HM Government for funding the spectacular fireworkds siplayed through the #WelcomeBackFund."