Lancaster fireworks festival to light up again this year


Lighting Up Lancaster: event back on this November. Pics Robin Zhaler
Lighting Up Lancaster: event back on this November. Pics Robin Zhaler

The Sky over Lancaster will light up this November as the city celebrates a “flight of the imagination” to take minds off the pandemic and mark the opening of the Christmas season.

Light Up Lancaster returns after a year away, to illuminate the city for two days over November 5-6 at various city centre locations. It will offer light projections, film, colourful robotic inflatables and giant lanterns – with a spectacular fireworks finale, the last of those staged by British Musical Fireworks Champions Sirotechnics at Lancaster Castle (right) on November 6.

On both nights the castle will also be the venue for Leap, a blend of projection mapping, animation, film, soundscape and storytelling.

Among other highlights will be The Hourglass (below), a 4m high sculpture, and Dream Garden by the internationally-famous Liverpool Lantern Company in Dalton Square, in which plants and flowers will be in full bloom despite the time of year.

Other locations hosting light installations will include Sun Square, Lancaster Priory, the Storey Gardens, The Dukes, the Judges’ Lodgings garden, and an Exploration Zone inside The Storey.

New for 2021 will be a Saturday daytime arts fair, a shop window trail and three new light art commissions from the Light Up The North’s SHINE programme.

All events are within walking distance of each other and are free, though wristbands will be required for the firework viewing areas at Giant Axe and Quay Meadow. Details here from September 20.

Light Up Lancaster is organised by Lancaster City Council, Lancaster BID and local theatre The Dukes, and sprung from a partnership between the city council’s annual fireworks spectacular and a pilot event in 2012 celebrating art and light.

The pilot attracted thousands of people and has developed into Light Up Lancaster, which is now part of the Light Up The North network – a group of similar light festivals in cities across the north.