Simply dazzled by parade of light

Lamplighter Festival, Todmorden. Back, from the left, Katrina Birch, Tom Ogden and Esther Waite. Front, Elena Birch Pullan, five, Tallulah Hirst, eight, and Jem Waite, seven. Picture: Jim Fitton

Lamplighter Festival, Todmorden. Back, from the left, Katrina Birch, Tom Ogden and Esther Waite. Front, Elena Birch Pullan, five, Tallulah Hirst, eight, and Jem Waite, seven. Picture: Jim Fitton

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This year’s Lamplighter Festival took to the streets of Todmorden last Saturday, when the event kicked off with a dazzling parade of lanterns making their way through thousands of cheering spectators.

Lanterns included the Lamplighter Lady made by Handmade Parade artist Kerith Ogden, a giant heron from the Liverpool Lantern Company and hundreds of jellyfish and fish lanterns made by families at open workshops held by Hebden Bridge based Handmade Parade artists specially for the event.

The parade made its way from Lever Street, along Halifax Road, Water Street and Rise Lane to the Pollination Street finish. Local bands Mr Wilson’s Secondliners, Handmade Samba and Dhamak kept both those taking part and spectators entertained with their music along the route.

The crowds were then treated to two hours of live music, street theatre, fire shows and light installations.

Highlights included fire shows by Flame Oz, illuminated installations by Spacecadets, giant flaming sculptural flowers by Walk the Plank, the world premiere of a new interactive street show by Frolicked called “Rat Race” featuring a giant cheese and performances by Todmorden Belly Dance.

A Christmas Crafts Market, showcasing work by local artists and craftspeople and a host of stalls from local food producers, also proved a bit hit with those attending.

Organisers Handmade Parade collected £515.06 on the night and would like to thank the generosity of those who attended. This amount will go toward offsetting some of the expenses of putting on the event.

Last year’s Lamplighter proved a huge hit with the thousands who watched and took part. The event followed on from the success of the Valley of Lights festival which boosted the town after the floods of 2012.