Morecambe Music Festival a huge success

The Morecambe Hotel was one of many venues packed for the Festival. Photo by Mike Jackson.
The Morecambe Hotel was one of many venues packed for the Festival. Photo by Mike Jackson.

Thousands of people packed into 17 venues for the first Morecambe Music Festival of its kind.

The festival was blessed with glorious weather as people soaked up a feel good atmosphere in town pubs and other venues.

Amber Sun playing at the Exchange on Saturday. Photo by Mike Jackson.

Amber Sun playing at the Exchange on Saturday. Photo by Mike Jackson.

Live music came from the Festival Market, the Platform, the Winter Gardens Parisian Bar, Jo n Lees cafe on Westgate, the William Mitchell, the Cumberland View, the Strawberry Gardens, the Exchange, the Morecambe Hotel, the Owl's Nest in Bare, the Bath Hotel, the Chieftain, the Lord Nelson, the Royal, the Kings Arms, the Palatine and Smokey O'Connors.

People came from far and wide to enjoy a wide range of singers, musicians and bands including The Reggie Mental Band, Twenty Four Seven, One Non Blonde, Keaton Ed Mars, The Jaybirds, Fuse, Dominic Clayton, Mark McKenna, Dani Gallagher, Amber Sun, Rick Jackson, Fay Marie, Jay Blackburn, Candy Stripes, The Filthy Lookers and more.

The one-day event, the first ever Morecambe Music Festival covering modern popular music, was organised by a team spearheaded by singer and entertainer Stuart Michaels, winner of The Visitor's Sunshine Award for Entertainment.

Jimmy Kay from Morecambe, who was at the festival, said: "It's about time Morecambe had something like this. It's been absolutely amazing, a pleasure being part of it."

People enjoying music in the beer garden of the Owls Nest pub in Bare. Photo by Mike Jackson.

People enjoying music in the beer garden of the Owls Nest pub in Bare. Photo by Mike Jackson.

Pubs enjoyed a bumper day of takings as people piled through the doors. Some venues like the Morecambe Hotel, Owls Nest and Winter Gardens had live music outdoors, and on Saturday evening the seafront was full of people enjoying the event.

Sean O'Connor, landlord of Smokey's, said: "We've been very busy. Stuart has pulled it out of the bag. Morecambe has been heaving.

"I didn't think it would be as successful as it is. I will be booking acts for next year as well."

Mal Neill, owner of the Berkeley guest house in Morecambe, went to several of the venues and praised all the acts he saw. He said he had people from Bradford staying with him because they had heard about the festival.

Festival organiser Stuart Michaels was delighted with how the event turned out. Photo by Mike Jackson.

Festival organiser Stuart Michaels was delighted with how the event turned out. Photo by Mike Jackson.

"As someone who's living here and owning a business here, I've got to say this festival has brought people into town," he said.

"I've never seen the pubs so busy."

Charlie Edwards, a Lancaster city councillor, said the festival was a "fantastic driver for visitors to the area" as he watched The Section perform at the Owls Nest.

"We are busier than a normal Saturday and that is testament to Stuart and his team," said Coun Edwards.

Festival-goers outside the Palatine on Saturday night. Photo by Mike Jackson.

Festival-goers outside the Palatine on Saturday night. Photo by Mike Jackson.

"It's been an event that's open to everybody and I think the people of Morecambe are really proud of it."

Stuart Michaels said the event would definitely return in 2018. The festival was funded by sponsors, venues and public donations.

"If somebody had told me it would be like this, I would have done it five years ago," said Stuart.

"The vibe around town has been unbelievable."

A festival after party was held today at the Exchange pub on Regent Road with live music from 4pm until late.

The Visitor's Greg Lambert visited all 17 venues on the day with Stuart Michaels, photographer Mike Jackson and Danny Matthews from The Bay radio. To see Greg's videos from the day go to The Visitor Facebook page www.facebook.com/thevisitornewspaper