[April Fools Day – 2017] Blackpool to sue Disneyland Paris over Illuminations copyright infringement.

Happy April Fools Day!


Blackpool City Council are considering taking  legal action against Disneyland Paris over a dispute regarding the name of the resorts  new night time show ‘Disney’s Illuminations’,  which is performed daily at park closing.

Disney’s Illuminations which features a mixture of live action and animation projected onto Le Château de la Belle au Bois Dormant (the Sleeping Beauty Castle) was launched last Saturday in spectacular style with a concert performed by singer John Legend.

The Illuminations  show which is part of the resorts 25th Anniversary celebrations replaces the much loved Disney Dreams!

The legal dispute has erupted due to the use of the name  ‘Illuminations‘ which is also the name of the seaside resorts own winter nighttime light show.

Show Boat, Blackpool Tower and Illuminations, Lancashire, England

The British seaside resort of Blackpool in Lancashire founded their Illuminations night time spectacular in 1879.   The Blackpool Illuminations  are dubbed as “the greatest free light show on earth”.  It uses over one million light bulbs and stretches for six miles (10 km) along the resorts coastline.


In 1879 the Illuminations were described as ‘Artificial Sunshine’, and consisted of just eight carbon arc lamps. The original event preceded Thomas Edison’s patent of the electric light bulb by twelve months.  This year the event will be held between 1 September to 5 November 2017.

David Steere a lawyer representing Blackpool said “This is a clear breach and violation of European copyright legislation”.   “The name [Illuminations] has been used by Blackpool since 19 September 1879,  and we intend use European Union protected status legislation to enforce this breach of copyright infringement by Disney” .


The Blackpool Illuminations attracts 3.5 million visitors to the city during its 66 night run.  In recent years the city has themed their Illuminations and in 2013 a Doctor Who theme was used.  Blackpool uses green electricity from renewable resources to power their Illuminations and the light-show is now carbon neutral.

A Disneyland Paris spokesman has dismissed the claim by Blackpool as “utterly without merit”.