The festive period saw Bournemouth’s lower gardens lit up by a series of emphatic lighting displays from Michael Grubb Studio. The Gardens of Light Festival 2013 was a new major event to boost Bournemouth’s winter tourism appeal.
From the iconic balloon to the meandering river, the specialist lighting designers utilised each dynamic of the lower gardens for an all-encompassing experience. An intricate lighting scheme illuminated the lower gardens’ trees as well as river reeds in the Bourne Stream during the festival, from the 16th of November to the 6th of January. The main attractions of the festival were the 10 Light-Pods, scattered along the paths linking Bournemouth Town Centre to the beachfront. Using the structures of traditional beach huts, the lighthouses used quirky interiors with innovative lighting designs to create optical illusions. Five of the light pods were brand new, unveiled by Michael Grubb Studio on the day of the festival’s launch. The public had the chance to see the other five at the Arts by the Sea Festival earlier in the year. Dancing on Ice star Vicky Ogden opened the festival with a performance on the ice-rink next to the light pods, before they were switched on. Vicky was quoted as saying “the gardens are great and with the illuminations I’ve never seen anything like it before”. The Gardens of Light Festival is part of a long-term project for Michael Grubb Studio, in conjunction with Bournemouth Town Centre BID, to oversee and direct a 5-year lighting master-plan.