We have been busy over the first quarter of 2022 delivering local events and promotions, and planning for a huge summer ahead. This has been done in partnership with local people and organisations and where possible, by utilising the remaining EU Covid support funding (which is why you may see EU logos on artworks). Below is a list of activities that you may have seen or are coming up …
Welcome Back – Spring into Leamington
With the support of some Covid funding and various partners, a program of events and promotions has been delivered throughout March aiming to lift the spirits and welcome people into town. All of the events and promotions had to be delivered in March to meet funding requirements. This included:
- Three weekends of music on the bandstand in partnership with OAF! and Warwick District Council.
- Four weeks of ‘Spring into Leamington’ advertising in local papers and across social media.
- Spring into Leamington Radio Advertising with Bauer (Free Radio) all month
- Love Leamington advert in Live 24/7 Magazine
- Show your Love – nominate a person promotion
Showcasing our Hospitality Sector
Also with the support of Covid funding, we are delivering a project celebrating our hospitality sector throughout March. With the help of popular food writer and presenter Ellen Manning we are producing four blogs and a promotional video. We are aiming to feature as many businesses as possible and the outputs will feature on our websites, partner websites and across all our social media channels. The blogs include:
- Where to Eat in Leamington this Spring – featuring many new businesses. Please click here to read.
- A Meal for Every Occasion – coming soon.
- Around the world without leaving Leamington – coming soon.
- Leamington’s Food & Drink Festival – coming soon.
Our Taste Leamington Showreel (film) will be launching soon and we are grateful for the incredible support of the businesses involved.
Queens Jubilee Preparations
The Queens 70th Jubilee celebrations will be in June (2nd – 5th) however the Royal Town of Leamington Spa will be celebrating this incredible achievement throughout the year and our objectives are to maximize our investment, bring people together in the heart of our town, and where possible, create a legacy. Plans are still being finalised however for now we can announce:
- Red, White and Blue bunting has been purchased to decorate the town centre. This will be installed by the end of March. We also have some surprise corgi’s on the way. Please watch this space!
- We are organising a ‘Right Royal Picnic’ in the Pump Room Gardens on Saturday the 4th of June. This will be an inclusive, community-orientated celebration with fun activities, music and entertainment in the Pump Rooms. There will also be fun trails around town, competitions, and creative surprises aiming to invite people into the town centre and enhance the experience, also planned around this date. We are very grateful to Royal Leamington Spa Town Council for helping to fund this activity.
- Warwick District Council will be lighting a Jubilee beacon in the Town Centre on Thursday 2nd June. This will include a town crier.
- Our stunning floral baskets will be installed in early June.
Little Book of Offers & Easter Trail
Other popular promotions including our Little Book of Offers and Easter Trail are also returning and we are grateful for the contribution and support from local businesses. Key dates and figures include:
- Little Book of Offers (featuring 57 offers) – available April 1st
- Easter Trail (featuring 56 businesses) – runs 15th April to 22nd April
Lights of Leamington
We have secured some grant funding from Arts Council England to research the return of this amazing historical event. The lights attracted thousands of visitors to our town from 1951 to 1961 and many people have fond memories of this spectacular event. This also inspired the Leamington Lantern Parade, an event we have been running for 10 years now. In this time many people have discussed the idea of ‘reigniting’ the Lights of Leamington however it would be a significant task and community, business and wider stakeholder support would be essential. This is why the Arts Council England has supported us to carry out a feasibility study to understand all aspects of the idea.
We have created a website and social media pages to provide background information and keep people up to date. There is also a survey we would be grateful if you can complete:
- Lights of Leamington Website: www.lightsofleamington.co.uk.
- Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/LightsofLeamington
- Survey (via Survey Monkey): https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/HX2JG5D
The Commonwealth Games
Leamington Spa is hosting the bowls for the Commonwealth Games and we are expecting approximately 5000 visitors per day to the bowls venue over 9 days. There is a lot of work being done in preparation and we are having regular meetings with organisers. The aim is to maximise benefits to local businesses and minimise road closures or activities that may interrupt business. Alongside this, BID Leamington will be launching a refreshed Royal Leamington Spa website and preparing a variety of maps and guides to be distributed to visitors.
Key information on the games can be seen by clicking here.
Please see below a brief Q&A with key facts and figures that we know to date:
- What are the key dates of local bowls and cycling events?
- Bowls competitions – 29th July until 6th Aug (2 sessions per day – over 9 days)
- Cycle Road Races – Sun 7th August (Women race in the morning; Men’s afternoon). The route is here – please click.
- What is happening at the Pump Room Gardens?
- This will be a public ‘live site’ with a big screen showing the games for 12 days (28th July – 8th August).
- On Thursday 28th July – late afternoon activities for families, leading into the evening for the Opening ceremony.
- The site will be open daily during Games from 10am – 10pm;
- It will be based on an informal “village green” principle – free entry, bring your picnics, watch live events on the big screen. There will be some food and drink vendors on site but not many to encourage people into town. Key dates will also include some “street entertainers”.
- How many people are coming to the bowls event?
- There are 5000 ticketed spectators a day – over two bowls session (am and pm).
- How will this benefit businesses?
- Opportunities to promote local businesses (e.g. maps, guides, offers) are being discussed with B2022 (organisers). The ‘Live Site’ will be promoted and the route between the venue and the town centre will be signposted and extensively decorated.
- Will the town centre be decorated?
- There will be colorful decorations in 4 key areas: Town centre, Live Site, Railway Station and walking route from station to Victoria Park. Also, some out-of-town dressing to welcome visitor upon arrival. Installation dates are still TBC.
- What works are going on around town and when will they be complete?
- Town Centre Signage upgrade including new monoliths to be installed May/June.
- Train Station concourse improvements – ongoing, completion due mid-June.
- Improvements to Princes Drive car park – work about to commence.
- The Traffic Management Plan will be signed off in the next 2 weeks by the local authority and we will update you further at this time.
- What else is going on and how can I make contact?
Please watch this space as there is much more to come and please get in touch if you have ideas you wish us to consider. Alongside this, we continue to constantly promote, support, and champion the town centre and it’s businesses via our social media channels.
We want this to be a year of community and bringing people together and must continue to support each other as we manage the uncertainty and health challenges before us.
Best wishes, Steph, Alison and Gary (the BID team)