Switch-On to be renamed iFest

Blackpool Lights Switch On 2014. Pictured are the fans waiting for the stage show and the lights switch on. 29th August 2014
Blackpool Lights Switch On 2014. Pictured are the fans waiting for the stage show and the lights switch on. 29th August 2014
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Blackpool’s biggest party has a new name – after a broadcast deal was signed with Sky Vintage music channel.

The Illuminations Switch-On Festival has been rebranded Blackpool iFest, as plans for another three-night celebration are revealed.

Chart-topping pop acts, still to be announced, will once more pave the way for the star appearance, as the Lights are switched on on Friday, September 4.

And the iFest party will continue on Saturday and Sunday, September 5 and 6, at the Tower Festival Headlands stage.

Sky Vintage will host the Saturday celebration with an 80s night. Its highlights will then be screened to Vintage viewers for months after the event.

And closing the show on Sunday, comedy will come to the Comedy Carpet at the headland for the first time - with Blackpool Council promising ‘the best of British’.

As reported in yesterday’s Gazette, the Friday night Switch-On will be free again this year, with a proportion of tickets allocated for local residents.

Last year 18,000 people enjoyed a star-studded night of entertainment, headlined by Little Mix and Peter Kay.

Coun Graham Cain, cabinet member for tourism and leisure, said: “I’m delighted to be able to announce our plans for Blackpool iFest.

“Last year was the first time we held shows on three successive nights and it went really well.

“The feedback we received from businesses and hoteliers was that it encouraged people to stay for the full weekend, which is what we set out to achieve. We are following the same concept, but changing the events so they appeal to a wider audience.”

Full details of the line-ups are due to be revealed in coming weeks, as well as ticket and registration details for the shows.

Vintage TV founder David Pick said: “We’re absolutely delighted to be one of the media partners for this exciting and extraordinary event, and we’re thoroughly enjoying the experience of working with Blackpool and everyone else involved.

“The Illuminations have been holding a special place in all our hearts from one generation to the next.

“The Blackpool Illuminations Festival has developed into a thriving, hugely popular event for fans all over the UK. We look forward to making this year’s weekend even more memorable, showing its highlights throughout the year to the millions of homes tuning in to Vintage TV.”

To register for updates Blackpool iFest updates visit www.visitblackpool.com/switchon.