Firework show under threat

Blast off: The fireworks event in 2013
Blast off: The fireworks event in 2013
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A tendering process is under way to find a new operator for the biggest event on Lancaster’s calendar.

Lancaster City Council will not run the annual Fireworks Spectacular in November, because of lack of staff.

So the council is inviting bids from private event management firms.

Several companies have already shown interest in organising this year’s event, which last year attracted crowds of 12,000 people.

Crowds traditionally flock to see the annual fireworks display above Lancaster Castle on the closest Saturday to November 5.

But after jobs were slashed earlier this year as part of a cost-cutting exercise, the council no longer has enough staff to put the event on by itself.

Coun Ron Sands, cabinet member responsible for culture and tourism, said: “Since last year’s event, there have been a number of service restructures within the council and the overall number of employees has reduced.

“An implication of this is that staffing resources are no longer sufficient to deliver the event in-house.

“It is for this reason that the council has agreed to procure the management and external delivery of the event.”

The 2014 event will be called Light Up the Skies and, as in 2013, will be part of a wider festival called Light Up Lancaster, which also includes music, street theatre and exhibitions.