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Instead of squelching mud beneath your wellies this summer, enjoy the sand between your toes in Morecambe – the festival town by the sea.
Once described as the Naples of the North, thanks to the natural beauty of its Bay, Morecambe is fast transforming in to the Brighton of the North with Morecambe Festivals By The Sea 2012, running from May to September.
The seaside town which was the birthplace of Eric Morecambe and Thora Hird has long been a player on the family entertainment scene and this year is no exception.
And in these cost conscious times, festival fun need not break the bank as most of the events lined up in Morecambe are free.
Family activities and music are central themes of Morecambe Festivals by the Sea 2012 with some events such as the Sandcastle Festival(June 9-10) and the Olympic Torch Procession and Sports Weekend(June 22-24) recognising the Olympic year.
Visitors can also enjoy sporting festivals including Morecambe Bowling Festival(June 3-8) as well as Morecambe Bay Golf Festival(September 10-14) which flies hot on the heels of this year’s Open, happening just along the Lancashire coast at Lytham.
And those looking for an alternative way of marking The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee holiday weekend, could visit the Nice n Sleazy Punk Festival in the town from June 1-3.
Morecambe’s summer party begins with a tribute band event, the Morecambe Live Weekender from May 5-7. Other music festivals to catch during the summer include: North Lancs Soul Festival(May 25-27); Country Kickback(June 1-3); Blueswater Festival(June 22-24); Morecambe Jazz(July 6-8); Tutti Frutti Weekend(July 27-28); Motown Magic(August 10-12); and the Beach Bash over the August Bank holiday weekend(August 25-27).
A celebration of traditional seaside fun and games takes off with the Catch the Wind Kite Festival(May 13) where spectacular display kites make the most of the sea breeze and add a blaze of colour to the famous Morecambe Bay view.
Families looking for great seaside fun are invited to take along their buckets and spades to the ever popular Sandcastle Festival and join in the annual celebration of the sea from September 1-2 at Morecambe’s Seaside Festival which features The Red Arrows and an explosive fireworks finale.
Morecambe’s important place in seaside history is reflected throughout the summer too. A Vintage Bus Running Day sees a fantastic display of buses running along the promenade on May 6; Poulton Heritage Festival(July 14-15) recalls Morecambe’s development from a fishing village; and during Heritage Open Days(September 6-9), the resort welcomes the ever popular Bradford to Morecambe Historic Vehicle Rally with many of the town’s most historic buildings also open for free.
The sense of community which has made Morecambe such a friendly place to visit over the years is celebrated on July 14 at the West End Festival, in an area of the town currently being filmed for the BBC1 programme, Turn Back Time – The Family.
This living history series will turn the spotlight back on to Morecambe – a town proud of its past which also continues to provide summer fun for today’s families.
For more information on Morecambe Festivals By The Sea, call 01524 582808 or www.visitmorecambe.co.uk
Did you know?
*Morecambe is the birthplace of Eric Bartholomew who, as Eric Morecambe, is one of the country’s best loved comedians of all time. The Eric Morecambe statue, unveiled by the Queen in 1999 on Morecambe promenade is extremely popular with visitors and photographers.
*Morecambe Bay is the largest expanse of intertidal mudflats and sand in the UK and is an important wildlife site with abundant bird life and varied marine habitats.
*The Midland Hotel in Morecambe is a supreme example of Art Deco architecture. It was designed by Oliver Hill and includes sculptures and features by Eric Gill.
*Dame Thora Hird was also born in Morecambe. Her father ran a theatre in the resort where the BAFTA-awardwinning actress made her first appearance as a baby.
*The Oscar-nominated film The Entertainer, starring Laurence Olivier as fading music hall comic Archie Rice, was largely shot in Morecambe.
*Morecambe was the home of the Miss Great Britain competition for more than 30 years.Among those who entered the resort’s many beauty contests was Rosemarie Frankland from nearby Lancaster, who went on to become the first British Miss World in 1961.
*Among other events in Morecambe during the summer are: cross bay walks, brass band concerts,Morecambe Bay wildlife events, and specially themed guided walks around Morecambe.
*Morecambe is on the North West coast, approximately 45 miles from Manchester and has been known as the Gateway to the Lakes with Windermere being only 21 miles away. It is easily accessible by road and rail.
For media enquiries about Morecambe Festivals By The Sea, call Mark McTigue on 01524 582870 or email firstname.lastname@example.org