St Annes’ mayor wants to see the town build on a rapidly-increasing list of attractive events – by staging even more.
Coun Vince Settle is eagerly looking forward to a packed calendar over the next few weeks, with kites, music, arts all in the spotlight, along with the annual St Annes Carnival weekend, to the delight of residents and visitors.
The array of fun-packed events gets under way with an Armed Forces Day celebration in Ashton Gardens on the afternoon of Sunday, June 28.
The St Annes Music and Arts Festival follows from July 18 to 26, with the final two days of that event coinciding with the town’s fourth annual Kite Festival, this year incorporating musical performances on the beach for the first time.
There is also an open day at the RNLI’s seafront headquarters coming up on July 19, while the long-standing St Annes Carnival celebrates its fifth year as a two-day celebration on July 12 and 13.
It all adds up to a potential financial bonanza for the town’s businesses – and Coun Settle feels there is room on the calendar for far more such attractions.
“It is wonderful to see the number of events we stage in the town increasing as they have in recent years – but I would like to see us stage even more,” he told a meeting of St Annes Chamber of Trade.
“A good model is Ulverston in Cumbria, where there seems to be an event on every week – and the visitors come flocking.
“The flag festival staged there is a good example and that always proves especially popular.
“Here the way the Kite Festival and other recently-introduced events have grown in stature and popularity very quickly, bringing in visitors from miles around, shows what huge potential there is here and with the natural attractions of the seafront and the parks, there is so much to build on.”
The growth of events in St Annes in recent years reflects a trend across Fylde, with Lytham set to host its second annual music and arts festival for a week from July 4 and the Lytham Proms series of A-list concerts now extended to the seven-day Lytham Festival in early August.
Performers such as McBusted, Faithless, Marti Pellow and Billy Ocean will entertain on The Green, while a wide range of events for all the family - notably a Festival of Stories at Park View 4U – are staged at various venues around Lytham.
“These are exciting times for events and it would be great to see even more staged and help bring a boost to local businesses,” said Chamber of Trade chairman John Moxham. “Anything which can help bring in visitors would be very welcome.”