Estimated 10,000 come out to see Bury’s Light Night

By Carly Turner

Human puppets, firework displays, a giant fire garden and a candle-lit labyrinth were just some of the attractions on display at Bury Light Night on Friday.

Venues across the town opened their doors to offer residents and visitors the chance to see the town in a whole new light.

It is estimated that over 10,000 people attended the event, the first of its kind in Greater Manchester.

Bury Council leader, Councillor Mike Connolly, said: “It certainly made me proud to be a lifelong Bury resident and proud to be the Leader of the Council.”

FUNBRELLAS: Just one of the light displays that were on show

Kay Gardens was transformed into a Garden de Light with lanterns, strolling musicians and Bury’s first ever late night specialist market.

Crompton Street hosted The Light Night Shizzle featuring street performance and a candle lit labyrinth.

Bury’s old post office building, which is currently surrounded by scaffolding, was transformed into a dynamic piece of art work for the evening with illuminated umbrellas adorning the structure.

New art work was unveiled at Bury metrolink station by American poet Ron Silliman. The neon installation features a line from Sillman’s poem, Northern Soul, which was written after he visited the town in 2009.

Previous Light Night events have been held in large cities including Leeds, Liverpool and Birmingham but Bury was able to secure funding to help stage the festival.

Angela Warrington, who works at Bury Tourist Information Centre, said: “Because they don’t usually stage light night in small towns like Bury we really didn’t know what to expect, we thought it would either be really flat or really mad and it’s just gone mad.”

Young and old from babies to grandparents were at the spectacle. David Lee, 23, a lifelong Bury resident said: “There’s a really nice atmosphere about the town and that’s not something you can usually say about Bury on a Friday night.”

He added: “I really enjoyed the transport museum as I have lived here all my life but never been there. I think it’s a really undervalued part of the town.”  

Carole Gardner, a teacher at Tottington Primary School, said; “I think it’s fantastic. I’ve never seen Bury so busy and it was great to see so many families enjoying the occasion. There’s obviously been a lot of effort put into the various light shows and events and luckily the weather was perfect. I really hope it becomes an annual event, boosts local business and puts Bury on the map.”

Councillor Jane Lewis, executive member for leisure, tourism and culture, said: “We were thrilled with the number of people who attended, especially the number of families as we were trying to create something for everyone. Hopefully the Light Night will become an annual event.  Personally I thought it was magical.”    

Councillor Connolly believes that success of the event proves that Bury is a great place to live, work and visit describing the town as the jewel in Greater Manchester’s crown.

Councillor Connolly added: “We will of course be reviewing the night and looking at ways in which we can repeat this marvellous event if possible.”

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