A FESTIVAL of digital light returns to Poole this February, with an expanded programme of creative engagement projects.

From Thursday, February 20 to Saturday, February 22, the town's Quay, Old Town and High Street will be transformed after dark by digital light art that addresses diversity in terms of age, faith, social exclusion and migration.

Libby Battaglia, of festival directors Audacious, says: "Light Up Poole brings people from near and far and places them among buildings that have witnessed nearby 800 years of human history. By enabling the public to contribute to art as it is made, we aim to both delight and enthral our visitors and reveal more about Poole and its surrounding areas."

One of the installations at the festival is James Smith's The People's Chandelier, located at the Fish Shambles on Poole Quay. Sponsored by NFU Mutual Wessex, members of the public are invited to fill jars with spectrum coloured water and place them on the frame with a light inside, producing endless, ever-changing combinations of light and colour.

Simon Godding, agent at the Wareham branch of NFU Mutual Wessex, comments: "As a local business, we are delighted to be working with Light Up Poole on one of the centrepieces of this year's community engagement programme."

Lighthouse writer-in-residence Jack Thacker has been working with Wave Arts Education Agency to run a series of poetry workshops for schoolchildren, focusing on creating work that celebrates the migration pattern of the osprey. These poems will be displayed at the quayside HQ of Birds of Poole Harbour during the festival.

Afterwards, it is hoped that the poems will be shared with partner schools in West Africa where the birds typically spend the winter.

Adding to the programme will be emerging artist Mig Burgess presenting 1 in 4, a project exploring mental health and wellbeing by using new sensor technology developed by Zetamotion.

A series of talks will also be held at Lighthouse, with speakers including TV historian Dr Janina Ramirez and senior science advisor at the European Space Agency, Mark McCaughrean.

Funded by Arts Council England and main sponsor Poole BID, with additional contributions from BCP Council and private businesses, Light Up Poole is now in its third year. Full details can be found at www.lightuppoole.co.uk