Blackpool Illuminations to be extended again after tourism boost

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Blackpool IlluminationsImage source, Gary Mitchell
Image caption,
The seaside resort had an "exceptional growth" of visitors during November, Blackpool Council says

Blackpool Illuminations will be extended again next year after the council revealed it had seen "exceptional growth" in visitors.

The seaside spectacle was extended to run until January to try and boost the town's tourism industry which was hit by the Covid-19 pandemic.

The display traditionally shines from September until early November.

Blackpool Council said the 2022 light show would also be extended until January.

It said the town was "well-placed" to become a "year-round destination".

A plethora of new attractions were added to this year's show in a £13m upgrade.

Council leader Lynn Williams said during November the resort had experienced "significant activity" which was "significantly better than expectations".

Parking usage had doubled compared to what it was pre-pandemic, the local authority revealed.

Image source, Visit Blackpool
Image caption,
The popular light show has been modernised with a range of new attractions
Image source, Visit Blackpool
Image caption,
The Illuminations will shine for an extra two months again

The council said next year's display would run from 2 September 2022 until 2 January 2023.

Ms Williams said the decision to extend the 2022 show had been made early, so businesses could prepare for the season.

A similar extension had been planned in 2020 but the lights were switched off on 4 November due to England's second national lockdown.

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