AN emergency meeting is being called by hoteliers and business people in a bid to “save Blackpool Illuminations”.
Many businesses – particularly in the north of the resort – say the world-famous Lights are dilapidated, outdated and turning people away from town.
Some have labelled this year’s display – which includes rows of bulbs left unlit – “the worst ever”.
Charles and Lorraine Hart, who own Harts Amusements in Bispham, say something must be done before businesses across Blackpool go bust.
They have now called an emergency meeting for business owners at the Sheraton Hotel on Monday to discuss the state of the Illuminations – parts of which were damaged by gales and a devastating fire at the Lights’ depot.
Mrs Hart said: “We’re worried they’re such a poor show. We know the council had difficulties, but they’ve thinned them out too far. They’ve even taken down strings of bulbs on the land side of the road up here.
“People coming through say it’s the last year they’ll come.
“We all need to join forces to save it (the Lights). We rely on the Illuminations as do all of the businesses.
“Some businesses up here have stopped donating because a lot of money is being spent further south. North of Gynn Square it seems you don’t exist.”
Blackpool Council’s Illuminations bosses today admitted there had been problems “out-of-our-control”, but repairs have now been made.
But when The Gazette checked out the Lights at North Shore, many displays appeared not to be working correctly, with some lights and projectors not plugged in.
FOR MORE ON THIS STORY AND A FULL RESPONSE FROM BLACKPOOL COUNCIL, SEE THURSDAY’S GAZETTE