Britain's Got Talent judges hit Blackpool for first time in five years
Hundreds of people lined the streets of Blackpool to welcome the Britain's Got Talent judges to the resort, for the first time in five years.
A huge crowd braved the miserable January weather to get a glimpse at Simon Cowell, David Walliams, Amanda Holden and Alesha Dixon.
David arrived at the Opera House in true Blackpool style, on the back of a donkey-pulled carriage which had the waiting punters in stitches.
The other judges led the way in a London-styled double decker bus and there were a huge number of screams from the crowd when Simon Cowell and the other judges emerged.
One woman who would have definitely been joining in with the screams was Felicity Feranj, 21, from Liverpool.
She said: “I’m Simon Cowell’s future wife, I’m going to throw myself at him!”
The upcoming series of the talent show is the first time it has visited the resort since 2012.
This year, it’s entering its 11th series and last year’s was won by Richard Jones – who became the first magician in the history of the show to win the top prize.
Every year, thousands of people audition for the chance to perform at the Royal Variety bonanza.
Thousands more turn up to watch the auditions live, including a group of four from Leeds who say it’s become somewhat of a yearly tradition for them.
Gemma Thornton, 36, Lee Chadwick, 30, Abby Foster, 15 and Beth Cockroft, 16 all made the trip across the Pennines.” We went to the Liverpool ones last year. We go every year.” Gemma said.
“And we love Blackpool.”
All four were in high spirits and had something specific they were hoping to see in the auditions.
“I’m hoping for something funny”, Gemma added.
The other three were hoping to see a singer or a dog act win it, or “a singing dog” as Lee joked.
The Britain’s Got Talent judging panel first arrived in the resort on Tuesday night, flying into Blackpool airport on a private jet, alongside presenters Ant and Dec.
Posting a photo of the six of them on her official Instagram page, Alesha Dixon wrote: “Back with my @bgt family and it feels good! Have missed these faces! Blackpool we are ready for you tomorrow!”
This year is the first time Britain’s Got Talent has returned to Blackpool since Alesha’s first series as a judge in 2012.
Earlier this year, she described the town as the “UK version of Las Vegas” and revealed that it would be the first stop on the judge’s audition tour.
She said: She said: “We’re going to kick off the series with Blackpool and there’s always so much focus on the first place we go to.
“It’s always nice when we visit somewhere we haven’t been for a long time. It brings a new, fresh energy, it’s great for the locals and people in the surrounding area.
“We’re going to come and make some noise, I’m really excited.”