Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole plans to leap out of lockdown with summer staycation celebration

At a time when other resorts may be taking a tentative step out of the pandemic, BCP Council is taking the initiative with an ambitious programme of free outdoor activities and events to re-energise its three towns and boost business this summer.

Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole’s inaugural Festival Coast Live! is the council’s answer to bringing life, colour and sound back to the region post-lockdown. Already underway, the festival will see a full ten-week programme of pop-up cultural experiences, art exhibitions, live music, and activities held at more than 15 open-air locations. These are being delivered by local professionals, community artists, musicians and dancers with more than 300 individual performances. This makes it one of the largest free to attend open-air events happening anywhere in the country.

This programme of events will help to build momentum and turbo charge the economy as preparations get underway for the 2021 Bournemouth Air Festival. Taking place from 2 to 5 September, the air festival attracts over 750,000 visitors across 4 days, leading to fully booked hotels and venues across the region.

This huge influx of visitors from across the country also contributes around £32 million to the local economy and supports around 500 jobs across the local tourism and hospitality sectors. This year the air festival has secured headline attractions such as the internationally acclaimed Red Arrows, RAF Typhoon and Battle of Britain Memorial Flight (BBMF).

Leader of BCP Council, Councillor Drew Mellor, comments:

“We already have a reputation as one of the UK’s most popular resort destinations, we aren’t content with resting on these laurels in the wake of the pandemic. Our Big Plan is to transform our area into a world class city region – one of the best coastal places in the world in which to live, work, invest and play. That’s why we are capitalising on the increased number of people holidaying at home this year, using our experience and local creative talent to deliver a brand new, colourful festival experience. This will encourage more families and children to spend time enjoying our town centres, highstreets and seafront - supporting our local businesses throughout the summer.

“Alongside the Bournemouth Air Festival, one of the biggest headline events for people coming to the South West, our amazing array of cultural, family friendly events will bring our communities back to together in the best of ways when we need it most. This will strengthen our economy at a time when many other councils will be struggling to get going following a flurry of event cancellations and uncertainty.’’

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Posted on Tuesday 3 August 2021