Community shines bright at Gainsborough's Illuminate Festival

Thousands of people from near and far created a buzz in the historic heart of the town at Gainsborough’s annual Illuminate event.

There was a fire garden in the grounds of All Saints’ Parish Church
There was a fire garden in the grounds of All Saints’ Parish Church

Activities took place throughout the day and evening, offering plenty of ways for people to get involved.

Gainsborough Heritage Centre hosted a self-led art trail, featuring Gainsborough artist Karl Wood’s paintings of the town on shop windows through the town centre.

Residents created lanterns in All Saints’ Parish Church throughout the day as part of the Church’s Craft Fair, ready to take on a guided walk in the evening.

Crowds of people, including families and couples, gathered for the Illuminate walk along Riverside Walk in Gainsborough.

Wearing big smiles and wrapped in warm hats, scarves and gloves, they carried hand-made lanterns as they followed the Fire Funk samba band, led by maestro Chris Lewis-Jones.

There was a sense of excitement as people chatted and laughed together as they followed the walk guides, who led the way with illuminated umbrellas, as everyone followed the wonderful sounds of the samba band as they walked and danced their way to Gainsborough Old Hall.

Residents watched from their homes, standing on their balconies overlooking the River Trent with smiles as they cheered on the crowd, waving enthusiastically at them.

Stacey Woods, from Gainsborough, who took her ten-year-old daughter Bethany to the event, said: “Bethany was on the film on the Old Hall. I am very proud of her, it was emotional.”

Gina Aldred, from Misterton, said: “It has been a really nice community event, especially after Covid and lockdown and seeing people out enjoying themselves.

“You feel like you are abroad, not just down the road in Gainsborough, it’s amazing. We went to the Old Hall and saw the videos, which were great.”

Chris Duncan, 38, from Gainsborough, who attended the event with his wife Kirsty and son Chester, seven, who enjoyed watching the short films on the Gainsborough Old Hall, said: “Chester really wanted to come and it has been really good. I have never been to the event before but we had been looking forward to the fire garden which is a bit different.”