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INTERVIEW: Exciting new light festival will "bring Morecambe Illuminations up-to-date"

The Angels of Freedom is one of 17 light-up attractions at Baylight

Excitement is building ahead of a new international light festival in Morecambe that will show off the Promenade like it's never been seen before.

Baylight '23 starts this Thursday, running until Saturday, and is being described as a "mesmerising spectacle for all the family".

There will be 17 light-up attractions stretching for 1.5km along the seafront from the Midland Hotel to opposite Morecambe Town Hall.

The event is a throwback to the Morecambe Illuminations of yesteryear, updated for the 21st century.

Some of the most exciting attractions will allow visitors to make their own music and even control lasers positioned on the roof of the Winter Gardens theatre!

People will be able to walk the stunning seafront route from any point and in any direction to view, and take part in, the illuminated activities.

Sian Johnson and Johnny Bean (pictured below) from Morecambe Sparkle CIC, the company organising the event, visited the Beyond Radio studio to talk about Baylight '23.

LISTEN to the interview here:

Johnny said the attractions at Baylight '23 are "really exciting".

"The thing for us with Baylight is to bring the Illuminations up-to-date," he said.

"It's going to be a lot of fun. You would never have got to play with the lights in the old Morecambe Illuminations.

"You can now get up nice and close with these things and actually engage with them, make things happen. They are very interactive."

One of the most popular activities is expected to be 'Laser Light City'.

Visitors will be able to stand in the gardens opposite the Winter Gardens (pictured below) and use their phones to take control of six lasers emitting from its balcony, guiding them to create their own light show!

Other popular landmarks the Eric Morecambe Statue, the Clock Tower, the Morecambe mosaic and the Queens Hotel will all be illuminated.

The projections onto the Queens called 'Light on the Community' have been designed by local schoolchildren and themed on Morecambe Bay. All entries in the competition will be on display in the Winter Gardens.

Shops, pubs and restaurants will be open for the duration of the festival, which runs from 6pm until 10pm each night.

Baylight ’23 will include a community parade on Friday February 17 from 5.45pm to 7pm.

The parade will begin at the mountain landscape just past the Clock Tower at around 6.15pm.

It will be led by the Baybeat band and will end at the back of the Midland where Samba Espirito drumming group will take over.

The parade should last about an hour after which everyone is free to go and view all the installations as normal and enjoy the event. 

Young cyclists also also being invited to 'bling up your bike' and add to the spectacle of the parade at Baylight '23.

Other attractions will include:

Life-size polar bear sculptures on the rocks near the Eric statue

Yesterlight - an homage to the past Illuminations

A musical Illumaphonium

An Aqualux light and water exhibition

A Garden of Flames

Giant illuminated building blocks called Pixels which you can use to build your own objects. 

Baylight '23 is organised by Morecambe Sparkle CIC, funded by Lancashire County Council, Morecambe Town Council and Morecambe Business Improvement District (BID), supported by Lancaster City Council. 

Sian, chair of Morecambe Sparkle CIC, said there would definitely be a Baylight festival in 2024 as the grant money runs out at the end of next year.

The team will be looking for new sources of funding to keep it going in future years.

Related Story: New Morecambe festival of light will 'reinvent illuminations' in the town - Beyond Radio

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