Get set for fireworks extravaganza!

Visitors are being urged to plan ahead as Matlock Bath Illuminations prepares for its busiest Saturday of the 2014 season.

Each of the remaining Illuminations Saturdays until 25 October features a fireworks spectacular in addition to the unique parade of decorated boats on the River Derwent.

Last One Home decorated boat on the DerwentAnd organisers Derbyshire Dales District Council are warning that car parks in and around Matlock Bath will fill up very quickly - and well before gates open to the Illuminations at 6pm.

Deputy Leader Councillor Geoff Stevens MBE, who also comperes the Illuminations entertainment said:

"We really would urge visitors to give themselves plenty of time if they're planning to attend our first fireworks night of the season.

"It's a great idea to use our park and ride scheme based at Cromford Meadows to the south of Matlock Bath and the County Offices car park in Matlock to the north.

"East Midlands Trains also operate an hourly service to Matlock Bath from Nottingham, Derby and Matlock along the Derwent Valley Line - and train passengers save 20% off the entrance price to the Illuminations on production of a valid train ticket.

"A plea from us on behalf of local people is that visitors respect the homes and driveways of people who live in and around Matlock Bath and do not risk a £70 fine by parking illegally on grass verges along the A6. Notices have been posted warning motorists that these areas are patrolled."

Decorated boats on the DerwentThis year the District Council has organised an extra fireworks night – sponsored by local attraction the Heights of Abraham – as it targets crowds of around 100,000 for the 2014 season.

This Saturday (27 September) is the first of five firework nights for the traditional Derbyshire Dales spectacle – in its 117th year - which burst into life on 6 September. The famous decorated boats parade twice on fireworks nights.

Councillor Stevens added:

"Attendances have been really encouraging to date, boosted no doubt by excellent weather. From now on in, for anyone who prefers a quieter night, we recommend our Sunday evening show.

"The District Council's key aim once again is to run the Illuminations at no cost to Dales Council Tax payers, while delivering another terrific boost to the local economy."

Boats parade at 7.45pm every Saturday and Sunday, and there are stalls to enjoy in Derwent Gardens, plus additional entertainment on Saturdays. The boats parade twice on fireworks nights, at 7.45pm and 9.15pm and tickets are available on the night or can be booked online. Prices are £5 adults and £4.50 over 60s/disabled people. Accompanied children aged 16 and under are free.

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