Blackpool Illuminations

Autumn is nearly upon us and it wouldn’t be the same with out a visit to the world famous Blackpool Illuminations which got switched on on the 30th August and the seaside city has a buzz of excitement to it. The Blackpool illuminations are a long standing tradition that started in 1912 to mark the first royal visit to Blackpool by princess Louise who officially opened the new promenade. Around 10,000 bulbs were used to such an  impressive result that they were encouraged to do the same in 1913. After this unfortunately World War I broke out so it was shelved until 1925 on a bigger scale starting in Manchester square down to Cocker Square. Again this was a great success and realising that it was a worthy tourist attraction the Blackpool illuminations were set to become an annual event! This was until the break of World War II where the lights were not turned on again until 1949 where they have been run annually for 66 nights a year.

Blackpool Illuminations           Credit Henry Brett

Blackpool Illuminations Image Credit : © Copyright
Henry Brett
- Flickr and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence

This year the illuminations were switched on by Jonathan Ross in a show that lasted for a whole weekend! This was followed by a concert with performers such as “Gary Barlow” “Madness” and “Eliza Doolittle” appearing!

Blackpool Trawler Illuminated Tram

Blackpool Trawler Illuminated Tram Image Credit Mjobling- English Wikipedia project and licensed for reuse

Talking of fantastic weekends, did you know the whole project costs £2.4 million to stage with the equipment costing over £10 million and weighing the equivalent of 350 Blackpool trams and while this seems like a lot this year the lights are due to pull in over 3.5 million people.

Blackpool tower and Illuminations

Blackpool tower and Illuminations Image Credit Mjobling at the wikipedia project and licensed for reuse

Things you didn’t know about the Blackpool Illuminations!

  • The light display covers almost 6 miles from Starr Gate all the way to Bispham
  • 45 staff work all year round on the display to ensure it will be ready on time
  • 65,000 hours are spent on setting up, operating  and dismantling the display
  • There are over 100 miles of festoon strip set up between the promenade and the carriageway with cabling and wiring that spreads over 200 miles!
  • Over 1 million lamps are used in the display with over 500 scenic designs and features with over 5,000 floodlights and spotlights
  • Since David Tennant flicked the switch in 2007 there has been a dedicated area for Dr Who by Coral Island and will now feature a full sized TARDIS and 7ft Daleks!
Dalek at Blackpool Illuminations

Dalek at Blackpool Illuminations. Image Credit : © Copyright Rept0n1x at Wikimedia Commons and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence

If you want to visit the Illuminations and are looking for somewhere to stay we have Bay Liberty’s on the Square Hotel which is located on the North Promenade.

Have you ever been to the Illuminations? If so what did you think and will you be going again this year, we would love to hear your thoughts.

About the Author:

I've been with the company for many years and started off working around different hotels however when I am not working I love spending time with my family taking in the amazing sights of the English Riviera. Living in an Urban Geopark area allows for some amazing sea kayaking around different bays whenever I get chance.

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