Morecambe Carnival: ‘It’s turned into a bit of a monster’

David Brayshaw.
David Brayshaw.

It’s going to be the biggest Morecambe Carnival ever as long as it doesn’t rain!

Main carnival organiser David Brayshaw admits he daren’t look at the weather forecast for Saturday and Sunday.

David and his team will be crossing fingers that it stays dry so the carnival pulls crowds even bigger than last year’s 37,000.

With big-name acts Scouting for Girls and Alesha Dixon heading a packed pop music stage on Sunday, a larger carnival parade than last year and more family fun events than in 2015, the line-up for the two-day extravaganza is mouthwatering to say the least.

“I don’t think there’s been anything this big before in Morecambe and that’s really positive,” said David, who is chairman of Morecambe Carnival Committee.

“It’s all down to the local people supporting it.”

When Heysham man David and his wife Carla, who run the Aqua Engineering sanitation firm on White Lund, put together a team to bring back the carnival in 2014, they never envisaged how big it would become.

“We were thinking if we got 2 or 3,000 people there it would be amazing but it’s turned into a bit of a monster.

“You never stop. The last three or four weeks have been a struggle to find time to run our business. We get hundreds of emails a day, and go to meeting after meeting.

“But that’s good. I enjoy it. We’re really pleased it’s making a difference.”

The carnival kicks off on Saturday with a programme for all the family between noon and 5pm, centred around the central promenade and the Bay arena. Many of these events will run on the Sunday too. They include a motor village near the Midland featuring a free-to-enter draw to win a £20,000 car, a 36-stall marquee, stunt displays by Morecambe stuntman Martin Shenton and his team (Saturday only), the EDF Energy Family Fun Zone with live music, a petting zoo, gyroscope, and a giant mechanised ‘Tyrannosaurus Rex’ walking about, emergency service displays and vehicles, a parachute display (weather permitting, noon and 5pm on the Saturday only), a sandcastle building competition (Saturday only), circus (Saturday only), BMX stunt displays (Saturday only), donkey rides and a land train.

Then the carnival parade starts at 1.30pm on Sunday, followed by The Bay live music stage from 4pm featuring Scouting for Girls and Alesha Dixon, and a fireworks finale at 9pm.

Next year David might be even busier, as he hopes to run both the carnival and a big music festival on the former Dome site too.

He said he has booked the arena for a ticketed music festival in September 2017. It would run under the banner of ‘Go Morecambe’ and will happen if the council gets Government funding to expand the capacity.

The area would be fenced off and surrounded by large double decker buses to ensure access for ticket holders only.

He said he had already spoken to the Boomtown Rats and made enquiries about Madness.

*Your handy guide to Morecambe Carnival HERE