Artist seminar kicks off preparation for Longford Lights festival 2024

Building on success of popular 2023 event attended by over 11,000

Press Release: 16 January 2024

Preparations for Longford Lights Festival 2024 kicked off at the weekend with the Longford Lights Seminar in Backstage Theatre. Over 70 people attended the seminar to learn about light installations and lantern art from local, national and international artists.

The Longford Lights festival will run over three evenings in Connolly Barracks, Longford from 23-25 February. Longford Lights is a partnership between Longford County Council and Mide Arts Group, with funding support from the Arts Council, Creative Ireland, and Fáilte Ireland.

Organised by County Longford Arts Service and Mide Arts Group, this weekend’s seminar brought together local community groups from Longford with artists from as far away as Derry, Wexford and the UK.

“Longford Lights was the biggest community-based art illumination festival in Ireland last year with over 11,000 people attending,” said Artistic Director Caroline Conway. “This year we have ambitious plans to expand the festival even further, to feature more local and national artists and more participating Longford community groups”.

Building communities of light

The festival aims to broaden the appeal of community-based light and lantern art making around the county, encouraging more and more communities and local artists to get involved and grow Longford Lights each year.

Local groups of all age ranges are getting involved, including for example, Longford ICA, Killoe Men’s Shed and Longford Scouts among others, who attended the seminar.

The theme of the 2024 festival is ‘Belonging’. It came from the Longford Scouts and their submission to get involved in the festival, which was inspired by their love of camping.

“What is really great about this festival”, said Bernie McBrian from Longford Scouts, “is the inclusion of groups and schools across the county. It gives the whole community a chance to work with professional artists and create something absolutely amazing”.

Let the light in

Following the seminar, Artistic Director Caroline Conway and her team will be busy preparing the festival in time for opening night on Friday, 23 February. Preparation work will involve developing a concept for an art piece in the former barracks campus. Each local group involved will collaborate with the artist to progress ideas and to help in the fabrication and ultimately, completion of either the artwork or elements of the piece. The separate artworks will form a large installation event, creating an immersive experience for attendees using sound, light, space and pyrotechnics.

Longford Lights Festival will be free to enter and open to the general public. Over the next six weeks, if you or your group are interested in volunteering or getting involved in any way, please contact Shane Crossan at

Additional details of the exciting 2024 Longford Lights Festival will continue to be announced in the coming weeks. For updates, follow Longford County Council on social media and check out