Video: Ambitious plan set to bring back Morecambe illuminations

Morecambe has got its sparkle back this festive season.

Friday, 31st December 2021, 9:51 am
Updated Friday, 31st December 2021, 12:26 pm
Morecambe will be lit up with extra seasonal lighting this Christmas.

The town has been lit up with extra seasonal lighting including 24 new programmable Christmas cones, lighting of buildings of significance, and some public realm features.

A video shot by drone of the Morecambe Christmas Lights 2021 has proved very popular.

Steve Duncuft (Skycam video) shot his drone video in 4K and it shows the Christmas lights in all their glory from The Midland right down the promenade.

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The seasonal lighting is all part of the 2021 Morecambe Business Improvement District (BID) Sparkle, with thanks to the Welcome Back Fund and Lancashire County Council.

Earlier this year Morecambe BID, along with other partners, were offered the chance to bid into a large pot of money by Lancashire County Council and Councillor Charlie Edwards to bring the illuminations back to Morecambe.

The bid document is still being worked up as a feasibility study needs to be conducted, but Morecambe BID decided to bring back the lights to the promenade for this year to preview what can be done.

Morecambe was one of the first seaside resorts in the UK to introduce an illuminations scheme. They ran from 1919 until 1996 when budget cuts and safety issues caused them to be cancelled.

John O’Neill, manager of Morecambe BID, said: “We have had a great lighting scheme in Morecambe for the last few years but it was reflective of our limited budget. We believe it benefits the local economy with residents and visitors alike, and adds to a sense of well-being amongst the local population.

“Should the bid to Lancashire County Council be successful then we really are stepping up a few levels as Sparkle is intended to become a pan Morecambe scheme with a variety of partners.

“A new, independent Community Interest Organisation called ‘Morecambe Sparkle CIO’ will be established with Morecambe BID as a partner. It will have its own trustees, committees, as well as an artistic and project director. Morecambe Town Council has already signed up as a partner, and discussions are continuing with other potential partners and sponsors.

“We need to stress that Morecambe Sparkle will not be copying Blackpool Illuminations, nor Light Up Lancaster. We intend it to be all about the district and the bay, as well as theming it on sustainability, education and local engagement.

“Most of the displays should be unique to the area. There’s still a lot of preliminary work to be done but our aim is to launch at the end of 2022 with our first full display – this year is just a taster.

“Due to supply chain issues this year’s lighting scheme is later than usual as we had to get the promenade cones built to spec and Covid-19 has impacted this”.

As well as the streets lit by the icicle festoons, and the synonymous spaceflowers, the Winter Gardens, Hitchens, B&M Bargains and the Midland hotel will also be illuminated by the BID scheme. These schemes are provided by Brent Lees (BCL Lighting), who is also the lighting director at The Dukes in Lancaster and has worked closely with BID over the last few years.

In addition the Welcome Back Fund, which is administered by Lancaster City Council and funded by the European Regional Development Fund, is providing funding to illuminate The Platform, Memorial Gardens, the Eric Morecambe statue, the Clock Tower, the Lake District panorama, and the See Wall.

Thanks to Steve Duncuft (Sky Cam Video) for his great footage of the lights in Morecambe.