The world-famous Blackpool Illuminations have been one of the UK’s greatest visitor attractions for more than 100 years.
Every year we aim to bring something new to the iconic display from breathing new life into existing features, to installing brand-new sections for everyone to enjoy. As we prepare for the Blackpool Illuminations 2020 display, we want to share some of the 2019 elements that form part of last years display.
Sooty and Friends
Izzy, wizzy, let’s get busy! This year, a whole new section will include Sooty, Sweep, Soo and ‘right-hand man’ Richard Cadell from the beloved Sooty Show. Sooty is treasured by Blackpool – he’s a sandgrown’un! On 19 July 1948, Sooty was discovered by Harry Corbett in a joke shop on Blackpool North Pier. They developed a fast friendship and appeared on television for the first time as part of BBC Talent Night in 1952. Sooty has been on our screens ever since – the longest running children’s television show!
To honour our Blackpool’s friendship with Sooty, the Illuminations team have created some additional features of Sooty, Sweep, Soo and Richard, which will appear across the roadway along the promenade in the form of 3D features of all the characters.
The Northern Lights
Blackpool Illuminations welcomes Northern to the display as their new partner to create their very own ‘Northern Lights’ section. Using state-of-the-art, programmable LEDs, the section was a colourful and bright corridor of lights welcoming visitors.
Beaverbrooks the Jewellers
2019 was the centenary year of Beaverbrooks the Jewellers, which began with three brothers and a suitcase in 1919. The flagship store was in Belfast, but in 1946, the headquarters moved just down the road from the Lights to St Annes-on-Sea.
To mark this special occasion, the Beaverbrooks section was updated to include sparkling references to their 100th birthday that will be reflected in their special centenary jewellery collection.
4Wall Theatre of Light
We saw the transformation of the Theatre D’Amour into the 4Wall Theatre of Light. The installation is an experimental piece that will showcase the cutting-edge in new lighting displays.
Mark McClure and Tina Dempsey
Artists Tina Dempsey & Mark McClure met during their involvement in Art B&B, a pioneering platform for experiencing contemporary art within a traditional bed & breakfast. Supported by Lightworks, the pair worked intuitively together to hand-paint a large bold, joyful lit mural that celebrates Fine Art & Design in Blackpool!
Neon is a really compelling form of lighting and this year, specially-manufactured LED neon flex lighting was sufficiently developed for this to be used in this new section, with several hearts lighting up the Promenade in all the colours of the rainbow.
Cliffs Enchanted Forest
Our illuminated garden located on the Cliffs area, is one of the more popular features, and this year will see the addition of Surf the Lightwave. So park up and see this area on foot so you can step onto the surfboard to work on your surf moves to generate an amazing lightwave – perfect for those selfie moments!
Mark McClure and Tina Dempsey
Artists Tina Dempsey & Mark McClure met during their involvement in Art B&B, a pioneering platform for experiencing contemporary art within a traditional bed & breakfast. Supported by Lightworks, the pair will work intuitively together to hand-paint a large bold, joyful lit mural that celebrates Fine Art & Design in Blackpool!
The 2019 Display, also included:
- The Beach House Bar & Bistro,
- Best Western Carlton Hotel,
- Escape Room Centre,
- Genting Casino
- Houndshill Shopping Centre.
Visitors to the Illuminations were greeted by an enhanced welcome experience at the north and south arrival points in order to encourage visitors to donate to the free attraction.
Blackpool Council continues to fund the Illuminations show, but increasingly it relies on donations from the general public or businesses. All donations received are reinvested into the design and creation of new displays and experiences for future generations.
If you would like to sponsor a section of the Illuminations in 2020 please contact Mark Windows via e-mail or call 07554 433 616.