UPDATE: Council ‘sorry’ over Lights Switch-On swearing

Pictured is Professor Green performing on stage.
Pictured is Professor Green performing on stage.
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Lights bosses were under fire today after complaints were raised over “foul-mouthed” swearing from comedians and pop stars during the Lights Switch-On weekend extravaganza.

Comedian Al Murray was censored after flicking V signs at passengers on passing trams during Sunday night’s comedy extravaganza at the arena on the Headlands.

Murray - aka the Pub Landlord - encouraged members of the 1,200 strong audience to follow suit before he was told off-stage he may want to rein in his act.

It followed Professor Green shocking the crowd at Friday night’s Switch_On party by using the F-word on several occasions.

Around 30,000 people attended an otherwise successful Switch-On weekend.

Tony Williams, Tory leader on Blackpool Council, said: “Whoever decided that this comedy was suitable for a family entertainment show at the council should consider their position.

“They are the right acts in the right place. But these comedians were the wrong acts in the wrong place.

“They were effing and blinding in front of children and young families.

“Surely this should have been an adult-only event. Every single comedian was using foul language and making rude gestures to passing trams is simply not on.”

In his blog, North Pier comedian Joey Blower added: “The council and tourism department excelled themselves last night. The comedy event should have been cancelled the minute Al Murray opened his mouth...(it) is not acceptable on an open air family stage and I hope the families who attended and those on passing trams call for your resignation.”

On The Gazette’s Facebook page, Anne Dalton wrote: “Professor Green was a disgrace with his foul mouth at a family event.”

And Georgina Hienz said: “Professor Green was the best there, shame about the slip of the tongue though.”

Scores more praised the event as one of the best in recent years.

Coun Gillian Campbell, Deputy Leader of Blackpool Council, said: “We did ask the comedians to try to keep their material as family friendly as possible, however, these are all very well-known comedians who have been on TV on a regular basis.

“I think common sense dictates that people going to a comedy show go in to it with open eyes and understand there may be some swearing involved.

“Censoring comedians is something that is clearly not helpful or conducive to a good show and the feedback we’ve had so far via the council’s social media pages has been overwhelmingly positive.

“That said, we do apologise if people were upset or offended.

“It’s very disappointing people are trying to bring negativity on what was a very well received event and a fantastic weekend in order to serve their own ends.

“This is the first time we’ve held four such diverse events over the Switch-On weekend and, as such, we’re really interested to hear feedback to help inform the composition of the show next year.”