Flying high as St Annes Kite Festival is soaraway success

Freya Pollitt joins in the fun at St Annes Kite Festival
Freya Pollitt joins in the fun at St Annes Kite Festival
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The St Annes Kite Festival was flying higher than ever at the weekend... but there is still a risk it could be grounded next year.

While the town laid on the biggest and best yet, the future of the colourful event might still be in doubt due to funding issues.

St Anne's Kite Festival

St Anne's Kite Festival

“At the moment we don’t have the funds to put it on next year,” said one of the organisers Pat May. “But our MP Mark Menzies announced he will make sure it goes ahead in 2019, so we’ve got our fingers crossed we’ll be back.”

An estimated 80,000 people turned out for the three days of flying. On Friday night more than 10,000 showed up for the night fly and firework display and the turnout for both Saturday and Sunday was around double that.

Kite fliers from as far away as New Zealand, the US, Singapore and the Kuwait national team flew in to take part.

An Arts Council grant of £24,000 paid for workshops, street theatre and a children’s mini-theatre. But the actual running costs had to be borne by the organisers after a bid for Lottery funding was turned down.

“The Lottery said there wasn’t enough evidence the community wanted the event,” said Pat. “At least 80,000 turned out, so I think that shows St Annes does want it.”