Blackpool’s popular arts festival Wordpool has been awarded a £70,000 grant from Arts Council England as it prepares to celebrate its 10th anniversary.
The popular local festival of literature and arts, which is managed by Blackpool Council’s Arts and Library Services and traditionally runs in July, has been awarded the funds to help develop the programme further during the next two years.
Organisers now plan to expand the festival with the new funding to create three new themed mini-festivals during the year in addition to the existing July festival.
This will include, in October this year, the launch of a Festival of Poetry and Performance, which will coincide with National Poetry Day on Thursday 6th October.
February 2017 will also see the launch of a new Festival of Written Words into the Wordpool programme, focusing on ways to introduce new writing. The event will see a range of well-known and emerging authors visiting Blackpool.
In addition a brand new Young Adult Fiction Festival will be launched later this year. The event will host special talks by authors talks aimed at late teens, young adult and crossover audiences as well as a range of other activities.
During this year’s main July Festival, a specially themed Family Day will run on Saturday 2nd July and will feature up to 20 different events, activities and attractions all crammed in to three hours of fun from 1pm onwards.
Also four weeks of initiatives in local schools will enable children to have access to a range of activities, with artists and writers will be showcased as part of the Festival.
The Arts Council funding will help to develop Wordpool for two years, helping to making the festival stronger and sustainable, developing staff and volunteers and attracting a range of well-known authors, poets, artists and performers as well as encouraging new and emerging talent.
Councillor Gillian Campbell, Deputy Leader of the Council, said: “This is tremendous news for both the Wordpool project and for Blackpool, providing the opportunity to develop this exciting initiative into an even bigger festival.
“It is particularly appropriate that it should receive this boost on its 10th anniversary and we are confident that the Festival will now potentially grow into a truly landmark event for the local area and beyond.”
Wordpool works with a wide range of partners to make the Festival a success including The Grand Theatre, Grundy Art Gallery, Family Learning, LeftCoast, Friends of Stanley Park, local schools and collages and the Blackpool Museum Project.
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