A look ahead to the 2019 Vintage By The Sea festival
PUBLISHED: 00:00 06 August 2019
Since it was unveiled by The Queen 20 years ago, the statue of Eric Morecambe has become one of Lancashire’s iconic landmarks. At the time it was installed, a few months after the death of his long-term comic partner Ernie Wise, the statue was seen then as a catalyst for the town’s revival – an ‘if we build it, they will come’ approach which has worked well.
Since the town's most famous son appeared on the prom in his familiar Bring me Sunshine pose, the Midland Hotel has been revamped, art installations have been added to the seafront and visitor numbers have climbed steadily.
Visit this month and you'll see scores of cyclists and walkers, huge numbers of wading birds and some of the best views you'll find anywhere. Hang around until the sun sets and you're in for a real treat - there are few finer places to spend a summer's evening than on the promenade at Morecambe. Except maybe in the restaurant at the Midland.
Time your visit right this month and you could also be swept along by one of the most joyous and downright fun festivals, the annual Vintage By The Sea event organised by Wayne Hemingway, another famous son of Morecambe.
The celebration of all things vintage will bring crowds of about 30,000 flocking to the coastal town on the weekend of August 31st -September 1st to enjoy the music, fashion and style of a bygone era. The event includes performances, events and shows as well as the chance to learn the dances of yesteryear and celebrate 20th-century design, fashion, vehicles and entertainment.
And by the time next year's vintage celebration comes around, work could be underway on the next major boost to Morecambe - the five huge mussel shells which will house the Eden Project North.
Bosses at the environment-themed tourist attraction say their northern base could create more than 300 jobs and attract about 750,000 visitors a year.
David Harland, the chief executive of Eden Project International, told Lancashire Life: 'Eden is about connecting people to the natural world and creating experiences that bring the joy and beauty of that world to life.
'We want people to have active experiences, we don't want this to be passive or a standard museum - we are in the business of giving people experiences they would not get elsewhere.'
The shells will house performance spaces, immersive experiences, observatories and pleasure gardens, all inspired by the bay.
Plans at the moment include creating three observatories, each exploring a different aspect of marine life and touching on issues such as climate change, pollution, health and wellbeing.