60,000 attend Morecambe carnival touted as '˜the best yet'
Over 60,000 people enjoyed Morecambe Carnival over the weekend with feedback from the public saying it was the best one yet.
Organiser David Brayshaw said: “It was amazing, on Sunday we were so lucky with the weather, the rain held off and it went smoothly.
“We had a flyover with a Lancaster Bomber, a Spitfire and a Hurricane on Saturday because their show in Ireland got cancelled. They couldn’t get out of their base on the Sunday due to weather there but unexpectedly came on the Saturday instead which was brilliant.
“We reckon there were 20-25,000 people there on the Saturday and 40,000 on the Sunday so we smashed the record of 60,000 over the weekend.
“You couldn’t move up and down the promenade, it was heaving and everyone was in a party mood.
“It’s so weather dependent and we just want decent weather really so we were grateful.
“It did rain on Saturday night for The Commitments. Dave Finnegan the lead singer was asked if he wanted to shorten his set to 8.30pm instead of 9pm but he said ‘as long as long as people are out there I’m stopping on the stage. People were dan cing with their ponchos and umbrellas!
“The stage we had was the same stage that Little Mix had been using on their tour and it was brilliant.
“When Gabrielle started, you couldn’t have got another person in the arena. You couldn’t move there was that many people.
“The crowd interacted with Gabrielle and Matt Cardle and loved them.
“She met some people afterwards and signed autographs and took selfies. The winner of the Carnival Talent Trail Alex Parker was very good. Also the winner of Morecambe Got Talent was great, as well as the local acts.
“We have got some talent in the town and there is some really exciting young talent coming through.
“As well as the eight people on the committee we had between 100 -120 volunteers and without them we couldn’t do it, their work is invaluable.
“These two days are really helping to put Morecambe on the map. Morecambe Carnival as a festival is now there on the map as big as some of the other festivals.
“We had 30,000 unique hits on the website over the weekend so it crashed. It’s getting the name of Morecambe out there and that has to be good for regeneration.”
For the carnival ‘Tree and Bees’ environmental initiative, 2000 trees were sold or pledged to be sold.
Organiser David Brayshaw said: “Hopefully, 2000 trees can be planted after this year.
“I’d like to give a lot of thanks to Ian Hughes and Kerry Hamer for their involvement in the project.
“It’s been a real bonus to give something back and create this wildlife legacy.
“There is nowhere in the local area where we can plant that number of trees and its important to plant in an area to help with flood issues, environmentally and to help the carbon footprint.
“The trees will be planted in the Trough of Bowland.
“All the costs of ‘Trees and Bees’ were met by sponsorship so all the money pledged to buy trees will be handed over.”