Lights boosted by Prom donations

Friends of the Illuminations hand over their donations at the Illuminations depot.
Friends of the Illuminations hand over their donations at the Illuminations depot.
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PROMENADE collections towards funding the Illuminations have jumped by around £14,000 this year.

A total of £129,000 has poured in from satisfied punters – up from £115,000 in 2011.

But campaigners say too many businesses are still failing to support the Lights.

Despite a number of initiatives, including the launch of a new donate-by-text service, contributions from businesses are expected to remain static at around £21,000.

Shirley Hunt, of the Friends of the Illuminations, said: “It is very disappointing to see so many businesses are still not contributing to the Illuminations.

“We are trying to get the message out there that we need everyone to donate in order to secure the future of the lights.

“They are vital for tourism and the whole economy of our town.”

Shirley, who is an ambassador for the Illuminations, encouraged all the hotels in Alexandra Road to donate and they raised £972 on their street alone.

It was one of three substantial donations handed over at a special ceremony at the Illuminations depot.

A donation of £4,500 was also given in by the Burbage Holiday Group, Harts Amusements and Bispham Kitchen, all based in Bispham.

The Blackpool Licensed Taxi Operators Association donated £500.

Committee member Peter Manock said; “We wouldn’t have a season without the Illuminations and it is an absolute shame some businesses won’t contribute.”

Deputy Illuminations manager Richard Williams said they were pleased Promenade collections had increased.

He added: “The donations are key, as we can use the money to create more innovative features to add to the display.”

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Lights boss happy with 100 year anniversary display

ILLUMINATIONS bosses say they have answered the critics with a top display for the Lights’ centenary year.

In 2011, residents and business owners complained that parts of the attraction had missing or broken bulbs and some sections were sparse beyond words.

But Lights manager Richard Ryan says the quality of the six mile display which greeted our visitors during the final stages of the 2012 holiday season was among the best ever put on.

The Illuminations boss added: “We genuinely pulled out the stops for the centenary show, against a background of the worst global recession in 50 years.

“We delivered 15 new features and 11 revamps, including the return of the Rocket tram, a fabulous Nickleodeon section and many more.

“We diversified the show with new and interesting items such as the ‘4x4 street to shore’ urban artist features and Fluted Pylons sections andthe feedback has been very positive.”

While the figures for the number of visitors to the resort during the Illuminations season will not be available until the new year, bosses are expecting them to show pleasing results.

And Richard added: “Now the work starts again to do even better in 2013.”

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