Forget the rain and enjoy Armed Forces event, scooter rally and blues gigs in Cleethorpes
CLEETHORPES is gearing up for one of the biggest weekends on its calendar.
Thousands of people are expected to flock to the resort for the Armed Forces Weekend – the main events being the Military Parade and memorial service on Saturday and Military Tattoo Sunday evening.
Also, hundreds of riders will cruise into Cleethorpes today for the 13th annual Scooter Rally, before leaving on Sunday – when 400-500 people are expected to arrive for the Cleethorpes Blues Festival at Pleasure Island.
But organisers are urging people not to let the threat of rain dampen spirits.
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Light showers are expected on Saturday, with sunny spells and high temperatures of up to 20C and even heavier showers, with 17C highs on Sunday – when 5,000 people are expected to gather for the Military Tattoo at the open-air Meridian Park.
Council leader Chris Shaw (Lab, Sidney Sussex) encouraged people not to be put off by the weather on what would be "one of the biggest weekends of the year".
"You don't need to miss such great events – just dress accordingly," added ex-serviceman Mr Shaw, who promises to be at the Armed Forces memorial service on Saturday – wearing his raincoat.
Bill McCann, organiser of the Armed Forces Weekend, said: "This is an event not to be missed for any reason, let alone a little bit of rain.
"There is a huge population in North East Lincolnshire and many people coming from outside the area so I think we will sell our 5,000 tickets."
Many guest houses have been booked up since last year's Scooter Rally and look forward to the arrival of hundreds of riders today who will leave on Sunday, freeing up spaces for those visiting the Blues Festival at Pleasure Island.
Francis Wood, chairman of www.cleethorpestourism.com – a new-formed group of ten guest houses – said: "We are all packed out on Friday and Saturday – people booked on their way out last year.
"Most of the scooter lot leave on Sunday and we are half full of people going to the Blues Festival," said Mr Wood.
"It is a shame that we could not take advantage of the Armed Forces Weekend because we were already full but I hope the weather holds out so it is a success."
Pubs and clubs are also expecting a "manic weekend", with the Scooter Rally crowd – which pack out bars every year – and England's Euro 2012 clash with Italy on Sunday at 7.45pm.
Bar manager of The Swashbuckle and BarRacuda, Sarah Duffield, said: "We are gearing up for what could be the biggest weekend of the year and have almost all of our staff on shift.
"We will have a Mod band on Saturday for the Scooter Rally – which is always busy – and big screens for the football. With all the events coming at the same time, we have this mega-weekend to take advantage of, although in some ways we have lost a big date in the calendar."