Holidaymakers first tripped the Lights fantastic in Blackpool in 1879 when just EIGHT arc lamps bathed the Promenade in what was described as artificial sunshine…the principle is still much the same today.
But the sheer scale, style and professionalism of today’s fantastic free show reveals just how much Blackpool’s Illuminations has developed as one of the iconic annual British events.
An army of staff including artists, electricians, joiners, mechanics, painters and engineers work throughout the year to ensure the display is ready for the big Switch-On.
Altogether 65,000 staff hours are used on maintenance, preparation, erection, operation and – when it is all over – dismantling the feature, fixtures and fittings. The Lights’ cable and wiring stretches more than 74 miles (120km) and there are more than 400,000 lamps of various types and styles.
More than 3.5 million visitors flocked to Blackpool to see the Illuminations last year.
Top designer and television personality Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen has been drafted in to the Illuminations team and created its acclaimed “Decadence” and “Venus Reborn” features plus lots more.