Businesses and arts organisations in the city have hailed the Light Up Lancaster festival as a “phenomenal” success.
The skies, streets and waterways were lit up in “spectacular style” during a four-day festival at the weekend, ending in the annual firework display from the roof of Lancaster Castle on Saturday night.
Thousands visited the city to enjoy Light Up The Waterways by The Dukes last Tuesday and Wednesday; Light Up The Streets, commissioned by Lancaster City Council and presented by Lancaster Arts Partners on Friday and Light Up The Skies on Saturday – all for free.
The total cost of the fireworks event was around £23,000. It attracted more than 12,000 people to the official viewing areas alone, while many more watched from other vantage points around the city and beyond.
Earlier in the week, Light Up The Waterways saw the Lune Aqueduct thrust into the spotlight, illuminated and animated with music, dance and light effects.
Light Up The Streets showed off some of Lancaster’s finest buildings, as crowds made their way from The Breaking Light performance at Lancaster Castle onto the musical Rule of Law outside the Judges Lodgings with surprises at every window.
Coun Ron Sands, cabinet member with responsibility for leisure, culture and tourism, said: “This year’s combination of events was a phenomenal success and showcased how local art and culture can be used to illuminate the history and heritage of our small city and show off its big story.”
Other highlights were Ignition One and Two in Market Square; Wandering Of Souls music, film and images in Sun Square; and Reading Lights, where illuminated poems were displayed on the bookshelves of a darkened Lancaster Library. Green Close Studios’ Shopped Out, a series of installations by local artists, brought some of the city’s empty shops to life too.
Lancaster’s Visitor Information Centre welcomed a record 1,620 visitors to the centre during the week.