Illuminating the best of Crewe, Lumen Festival of Lights is the town’s night of lights, a festive spectacle launched on the last Friday in November.
Since its inception in 2018, Lumen has drawn large crowds from across the region to the big switch-on event in Memorial Square. The first event was a bold addition to Crewe’s events programme with many travelling from Stoke, Newcastle, Middlewich, Northwich and Derbyshire, after hearing about the spectacle on social media.
Thousands descended on Crewe for the eagerly-anticipated return of Lumen in 2019, when crowds were left dazzled by another glittering programme. Attractions included jaw-dropping acrobatics over Memorial Square, an interactive LED installation called Colour Motion by artist Chris Plant, as well as a lantern procession which was led through the town by London samba group Rhythms of the City. After the big switch-on, a large-scale light projection was shown on the Municipal Buildings until 27 Dec, commissioned from Edinburgh projection experts Double Take, with a soundtrack from composer Barnaby Smith.
2020 saw the event dimmed down in the wake of Covid-19, but the good news is that Lumen is set to make a big comeback this year, with another month-long event featuring the creative flair of the team behind Blackpool’s world-famous illuminations. A new initiative has also been launched to target more emerging and mid-career artists from the local area to appear in the programme. Funded by Arts Council England and Cheshire East Council, the Lumen LightLab project is anchored in Crewe and prioritises artists from the area who can add extra shine to the festivities with stunning installations. Masterclasses with experts in the light festival field have already taken place during a trip to Blackpool by 10 artists and the best three designs will be unveiled during Lumen 2021.
Organisers say that Lumen 2021 is shaping up to be bigger and brighter than ever, with a few surprises on the night. We can’t wait to see carnival come back to Crewe this Christmas.