Roker Park Lights / Sunderland Illuminations

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Like most people who grew up in Sunderland, the Illuminations, or ‘The Lights’ were an integral part of growing up. For those not familiar, the whole town would be decorated with lights, along with the seafront and Roker Park. Essentially a smaller scale Blackpool, without the tower. The highlight of Roker Park, aside from the mystical caves in the ravine, was for me the even more mystical ‘floating’ tap which was the centrepiece of the boating lake. It appeared to be suspended mid air, with a healthy stream of water gushing forth. Amazing. It was only in adult years I figured out how this particular optical illusion worked…


Sadly, the illuminations stopped at some point in the 1990s I recall (anyone know the exact year?) and the onset of autumn on Wearside was never quite the same. Until 2012, when I was delighted to see the lights making a return – albeit on a smaller scale and just covering Roker Park. Alas, the tap was nowhere to be seen, but it was still a fantastic sight – well done to all involved and hopefully it was the start of regular lights returning to Wearside.


I certainly wasn’t going to miss out on taking photos…



  • Katy Wood September 30, 2013   Reply

    Not long!

  • Sandra Clarke September 24, 2014   Reply

    Even in the pouring rain we all went down the whole family got soaked but it was amazing can’t wait to go again this yearkeep it up and bring on more that’s what I say.

  • Derek Jefferies October 18, 2014   Reply

    We came all the way from Redcar to see them and we were not disappointed, loved the fountains, in fact loved it all and had a pleasant park and ride trip from Seaburn car park too

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