The first big event from Greater Yarmouth Tourism and Business Improvement Area
Residents and visitors are invited to Sea Life Centre Gardens, Great Yarmouth from 7.30pm on Saturday 2 May this Bank Holiday weekend for live musical entertainment from local band ‘Aftershock’ on the HEART sound stage as the countdown begins for the first of this season’s seaside firework displays and the switch-on of the new seafront decorative lighting from 9pm.
As the first big project from the new Greater Yarmouth Tourism and Business Improvement Area, the new decorative lights will fill the large sail-shaped spaces in all 84 lighting columns along Marine Parade. The Greater Yarmouth Tourism and Business Improvement Area have approved funding for a 5-year installation, to include an annual maintenance programme. The tender for the project was awarded to lighting company Festive Lighting who are working with local company, Cozens Electrical for the installation and maintenance element of the project.
Gareth Brown, General Manager at Haven – Caister, BID Board Member and Chair of the Facilities, Maintenance and Access Output Group said: “The installation of decorative lighting on Marine Parade, which really is Greater Yarmouth’s all-important shop window for the resort area, is an essential first project for the Business Improvement District. The lights will encourage tourists to venture out in the evening, help create a friendly holiday atmosphere and make the seafront an even better, brighter, safer place for visitors and residents to take a stroll, providing a further incentive to spend money in local businesses.”
The golden columns were installed 10 years ago as part of the £16m seafront refurbishment. In 2008 thanks to funds from the former Greater Yarmouth Tourist Authority and sponsorship from local businesses, every other column had either a colourful light designed by local school children or a sparkling light. Columns in-between featured advertising banners from those companies who had sponsored the project. Funds to maintain the lighting ran dry after three years and the columns have been mainly unlit for the past few years whilst the former GYTA was working to implement the business improvement district.
Lyndon Bevan, proprietor of MB’s Funhouse Hemsby, BID Board Member said, “The significance of Saturday night’s event is great: that the BID has been implemented; that the first project is coming to fruition and that everyone will be able to see what an impact can be made when businesses, whether big or small, come together and work together to improve the borough and boost trade for everyone.
The BID board has agreed funding for a number of fireworks displays from Saturday 2 May until Christmas as follows:
Saturday 2 May – Central Beach, Great Yarmouth
Sunday 24 May – Hemsby Beach
Wednesday 27 May – Central Beach, Great Yarmouth
Every Wednesday from 15 July to 26 August – Central Beach, Great Yarmouth
Every Tuesday from 21 July to 1 September – Hemsby Beach
Sunday 26 July – Gorleston Cliff Top Festival
Date TBC – Gorleston-on-Sea Christmas Switch On