Tableaux trashed again in ‘mini whirlwind’

Illuminations damaged in storm force winds on Monday night.
Illuminations damaged in storm force winds on Monday night.
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A clear-up is under way after high winds tore through a section of Blackpool Illuminations.

Tableaux in North Shore were damaged for the second time in less than a year with the Dino Doom display taking the worst of the impact.

It is now due to be removed for repairs.

Businessman Mick Grewcock, whose Queens Mansions holiday apartments on Queens Promenade, Bispham, overlook the tableaux, said: “There was a huge gust of wind, like a mini whirlwind, which shook the whole house.

“We then heard a crash and looked out to see about a third of the Dino Doom had come down. It’s lucky no-one was walking past when it happened.

“It has done a lot of damage and one of the dinosaurs is completely crushed. It has even ripped the main poles out of the sockets.

“It looked a terrible mess.

“The Illuminations have had a lot of bad luck recently and I feel very sorry for the staff.”

Council workers cordoned off the area and made the display safe following the damage which happened during Monday night’s high winds.

The cost of the damage has not been calculated yet.

Coun Graham Cain, cabinet member for tourism and culture, said: “Unfortunately on Monday night two of our tableaux were badly damaged in strong winds.

“We will be removing the entire Dino Doom tableau as soon as possible but throughout Tuesday the winds were just too strong and it wasn’t safe.

“We’ve fenced the area off and cleared as much of the debris as we could.

“Hopefully we will replace Dino Doom with another tableau later this week.”

The tableaux are not insured but the council has its own contingency fund for unexpected repairs.

The damage is the latest in a series of misfortunes to hit the Illuminations.

In November last year, gale force winds of up to 100 mph caused around £600,000 of damage to nine tableaux in Bispham including Hickory Dickory Dock, Alice in Wonderland and Sing A Song of Sixpence.

A fire at the Illuminations depot on Rigby Road in June destroyed around £100,000 worth stock including plastic mouldings.