By George! What a record breaker

St George's Festival parade in Lytham
St George's Festival parade in Lytham

This year’s eighth annual Lytham St George’s Festival was the most successful yet.

It generated a record £82,320 to be split between the three charities it supported and Festival chairman Bob Gallagher said: “Thanks to everyone involved and we look forward to making next year’s event even bigger and better.”

The Festival, celebrating all that is best about England and promoting the fact that St George’s Day should be a bank holiday, brought a glorious splash of colour to Lytham over five days, beginning with the raising of the St George’s Day flag at Charlie’s Mast on The Green and culminating in a hugely popular family fun day.

It also included the traditional parade through the streets of town, comedy, golf, a lunch and black tie dinner in a grand marquee on the Green and this year, ahead of next month’s referendum, even a breakfast debate on the issue of EU membership.

The charities supported were ABF The Soldiers’ charity, Trinity Hospice and the Love Lowther campaign for the renovation of Lytham’s theatre.

All were delighted to see the cash target of £75,000 smashed as crowds flocked to the Festival events and Mr Gallagher added: “Attendance records were broken at all the events and this was undoubtedly the most successful festival since we started eight years ago.

“The most rewarding part has been the amazing generosity of so many people, culminating in us being able to raise £82,320 for our chosen charities.

“At the Friday lunch alone we had two amazing spontaneous donations of £5,000 from two well-known local individuals who wished to remain anonymous.

“The festival beneficiaries were absolutely delighted.”

Phil Naylor. regional director of ABF The Soldiers Charity, said: “Once again it has been a real privilege for ABF The Soldiers’ Charity to be part of the Lytham St George’s Charity Festival.

“This year, the Festival was an enormous success, packed full of great events, enjoyed by hundreds of people and raising a record breaking 
sum for charity. 

“The success of the event is built on great leadership, enthusiastic supporters, quality events and an excellent atmosphere.  It is very clear just how much everyone enjoys themselves and the popularity of the Festival has grown year on year.  

“Over the eight years that the Festival has run, we have been fortunate to have received many thousands of pounds to assist soldiers, veterans and families in times of need and we are absolutely delighted with how much was raised this year.  

“We look forward to a long and successful relationship with the Lytham St George’s Festival.”

Tim Lince, chairman of the Lowther Trust, said: “We would like to thank the St George’s Day Festival committee for their generous donation to our Love Lowther appeal.

“Through their contribution we are now able to push forward with the replacement of all the Lowther’s seating this summer.  This will enable us to provide our customers with a first class experience when they visit the Pavilion theatre as under our aim to see the building completely restored and revitalised.”

Michelle Lonican, Trinity Hospice’s community fundraiser, said: “We, at Trinity, are enormously grateful for the generous donation from the St George’s Day Festival Committee for this year’s successful events in Lytham, beating all records.

“It was wonderful to be part of such an enjoyable community event. The donation will help us towards our continuing end of life care for patients across Blackpool, Fylde and Wyre and we thank all those who have been part of making it so successful.”