Andy Mitchell from Radio Wave

The BBC Philharmonic perform Light Odyssey at the Empress Ballroom to mark the start of the Lightpool Festival
The BBC Philharmonic perform Light Odyssey at the Empress Ballroom to mark the start of the Lightpool Festival
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Welcome to the busiest fortnight in Blackpool’s calendar... it’s half term and the last push before the end of the season.

As I drove down the M6 on Saturday morning it was so heartening to hear the travel news reporters on the radio describe how busy it was as everyone headed up North to their favourite seaside resort for the holidays.

Meanwhile, here in town, we’ve been getting to grips and enjoying attractions that you maybe wouldn’t find as part of Blackpool’s night time offer, and how amazing it was.

I refer to last week’s fabulous performance by the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra as they gave such a splendid performance in the opulent surroundings of the Winter Gardens Empress Ballroom.

This, of course, was all part of the magnificent Light Odyssey event, an amazing display of light on the cavernous ceiling of The Empress which had its audience spellbound all evening.

That the BBC Philharmonic was in town at all is something of a major coup and didn’t come cheap, but it is essential that we keep trying new things, it’s what Blackpool is all about.

For so long there have been claims that the traditional town centre attractions, including the style of entertainment, have been targeted at one section of the public, but here we saw people who hadn’t ventured into town for ages, finding something for them on their own doorstep.

Blackpool, of course, is about fun, brash entertainment for the masses, and the tens of thousands making their way up the motorway to be our customers this week know that only too well, and they love us for it.

The hotels are packed this week, the cabaret bars enjoying the busiest time of the year and the Promenade is home to hundreds of thousands of resort fans seeing the Illuminations and the Lightpool displays.

The pubs will see their biggest spike of the year and the traditional burger and rock stalls will be open until late doing what they’ve been doing so well for 150 years.

But, as one senior town figure said to me last week, people who’d never set foot in town for years, suddenly rediscovered The Winter Gardens, the town centre restaurants and the night time vibe for themselves. Something for everyone it seems... yes even if you’re into the BBC Philharmonic.