Iconic Blackpool hotel that’s under threat from the weather

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A section of the Grade II listed building’s ceiling collapsed earlier this year and repairs are needed

 

Imperial Hotel in Blackpool
Imperial Hotel in Blackpool

An iconic Blackpool hotel which suffered a ceiling collapse is set to be repaired after permission was granted to fix the listed building.

Structural engineers visited the Imperial Hotel in January after part of the ceiling at the Palm Court restaurant collapsed.

The hotel, which is Grade II listed, was built in 1866/1867 but the north extension which houses the restaurant was built later in 1904 when a ground floor, basement and three upper floors were added.

The ground floor and basement projects forward of the main façade, and currently contains the larger part of the hotel restaurant on the ground floor, with a swimming pool under, which forms part of the hotel leisure club.

Remedial works are now needed to be carried out at the hotel which has been “exposed to the full force of storms from the Irish Sea” resulting in damage to the reinforced joists.

The plans reveal that without the work the “integrity of the structure” is threatened by the strong winds and salt spray.

Documents submitted with the application state: “The Imperial Hotel has occupied its prominent but exposed position on the sea front for over 150 years, and during that time has weathered storms, gales, high winds, salt spray and other issues that have over time caused both specfic damage to roofs and the more exposed elements of the building, plus a general level of disruption and deterioration which has meant that maintenance is a constant and ongoing problem and necessity to maintain the standards and appearance expected in such a prominent hotel.

“These cracks then admit more water, and the process and the deterioration accelerate, to the extent that it threatens the integrity of the structure.”

The repairs will stabilise and seal the rusting steelwork by “pressure injecting and encapsulating the rusting filler joists with a chemical sealant”.

Blackpool Council has now approved the plans.

 

The Lancashire places doing afternoon tea that you absolutely must try

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This Afternoon Tea Week why not visit some of Lancashire best and quirkiest spots for afternoon tea.

 

Owd Barn at Bispham serving a tower of delicious treats
Owd Barn at Bispham serving a tower of delicious treats (Image: Joe Ferguson)

What says ‘Britain’ more than conversing with companions over cucumber sandwiches, jam and cream scones and of course, tea?

This week is Afternoon Tea Week, a celebration of the British tradition and the perfect excuse to catch up with loved ones and eat some cake.

Afternoon Tea Week runs from August 9 to 15 so now is the time to grab a friend or family member and find a local tea room – or steam train depending on your preference.

Lancashire is home to numerous tea rooms and cafes hidden amongst high streets and down cobbled roads, all serving up delicious afternoon teas.

Here are some of the places to enjoy afternoon tea in Lancashire.

Bon Bon’s Coffee Bar- Penwortham

Bon Bon's Penwortham serves delicious afternoon tea
Bon Bon’s Penwortham serves delicious afternoon tea

Rated five stars on TripAdvisor for their delicious food and service, Bon Bon’s Coffee Bar in Penwortham is very well regarded by customers.

A tower of sweet and savoury delights balance each other out for and a large pot of tea to boot.

Owd Barn at Bispham

Owd Barn at Bispham serving a tower of delicious treats
Owd Barn at Bispham serving a tower of delicious treats (Image: Joe Ferguson)

A rustic-themed afternoon tea within a rustic barn makes for a cosy afternoon spent eating cakes and drinking tea.

Served on beautiful cake stands filled with a range of scones, jams, creams, cakes, tarts and traybakes and a mixture of savoury treats to enjoy.

With a beautiful location to enjoy on top of the delicious treats, the Owd Barn is a great place to discover this Afternoon Tea Week.

Bread and Butter- Penwortham

Bread and Butter tea room in Penwortham
Bread and Butter tea room in Penwortham

As the name suggests, this little Penwortham cafe specialises in tasty bakes.

It offers a three-tier traditional afternoon tea with all the trimmings and more.

Each tier is filled with scones, tarts, profiteroles, sandwiches and soups all made to delight the taste buds.

You’ll be spoilt for choice on what to pick to eat first.

East Lancashire Railway

East Lancashire Railway Line
East Lancashire Railway Line (Image: The Press Association)

What better way to enjoy afternoon tea than while travelling through the scenic Lancashire countryside.

Aboard a steam train, passengers can enjoy a beautiful 90 minute steam train ride through the Irwell Valley whilst drinking fizz alongside a selection of sandwiches, savouries, scones and cakes with unlimited tea and coffee.

An afternoon of refinery and sophistication is definitely on the cards aboard the Pullman-style carriages.

Beautiful Bake and Fabulous Cakes- Blackpool

A spectacular view of the Pleasure Beach
A spectacular view of the Pleasure Beach

Afternoon tea on the Promenade, there’s a treat.

Beautiful Bake and Fabulous Cakes makes scones, pavlova and cupcakes every morning and pairs them delicious sandwiches made with quality home roasted meat.

Sit on the outdoor decking and get a spectacular view of The Big One whilst enjoying some delicious afternoon tea at this unique location.

The Quirky Tea Room- Lytham

Afternoon tea served on mini picnic tables
Afternoon tea served on mini picnic tables

Quirky by name, quirky by nature. This afternoon tea is delivered on picnic benches, definitely quirky.

Delicious sweet and savoury picks to choose from including scones with cream, jam and fresh berries, mini cakes with delicious swirls of icing and scrumptious sandwiches to enjoy.

This tea room in Lytham is a brilliant little place to visit whilst visiting the coast and a great way to spend the afternoon with loved ones.

The Mill- Lostock Hall

The Mill at Lostock Hall serving a fantastic spread of sweet and savoury treats
The Mill at Lostock Hall serving a fantastic spread of sweet and savoury treats

For a tower of delectable delights served on beautiful stands, The Mill, within St Catherine’s Park provides a delicious afternoon tea.

Beautifully handmade cakes and traybakes each crafted to perfection so not only easy on the eyes but also the taste buds.

All profits raised here are given to St Catherine’s Hospice too.

 

Historic Blackpool pub’s £3.5m transformation is under way as Talbot Gateway steams ahead

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The Hop Inn in Blackpool is set for a new future costing millions of pounds

 

The former Hop Inn pub is being transformed in to a dentist
The former Hop Inn pub is being transformed in to a dentist

Work has started on converting part of the historic Hop Inn pub in Blackpool in to a dental surgery at a cost of £3.5m, with the historic frontage of the former watering hole retained.

The scheme is part of a bigger £100million investment to build a seven storey office block on land between East Topping Street, Cookson Street, King Street and Deansgate.

It is hoped to begin construction of the offices in March or April 2022 as part of the third phase of the Talbot Gateway masterplan.

The King Street dental practice is among buildings earmarked for demolition to make way for the redevelopment and will be relocated to what was the Hop Inn; and what was The Veevers Arms Hotel before it was known as that.

Blackpool Council chiefs have appointed the Blackpool Local Education Partnership, set up to handle real estate, as its strategic partnership contractor to undertake the detailed design and construction required to convert the Hop Inn.

Arrangements are also being made to provide a temporary relocation site for the dental practice if necessary while work is underway.

A council report says: “In order to secure the Talbot Gateway phase three development it is imperative that the council has vacant possession of the land as detailed in the planning application.”

The Hop Inn's external features will be retained as part of wider plans to transform it into a dental surgery
The Hop Inn’s external features will be retained as part of wider plans to transform it into a dental surgery (Image: Cassidy + Ashton)

It adds the dental surgery “must be relocated in the next eight months in order to deliver the new office building in sufficient time to meet the prospective tenant’s lease expiry deadlines”.

The report says it “is anticipated that the work on the new office block will start in March /April 2022”.

It adds: “The total estimated cost to undertake the enabling work, detailed design and construction work required to convert part of the old Hop Inn into a dental surgery is £3.5m.”

Planning permission was granted in March for the conversion of the locally listed Hop Inn.

The front facade of the building in its three storey form will be retained as a focal point for the public realm areas between it and the new offices.

A two to three storey extension will be built on the back of the building, with other parts of the back of the former pub demolished to make way for a surface-level car park.

New hope for half-built £50m Blackpool housing scheme but some work could be ‘condemned’

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Work stalled on the Foxhall Village housing development in Blackpool when contractor Hollinwood Homes went into administration

 

Foxhall Village housing development
Photo: David Hurst Stan Mortensen Avenue, Foxhall Village, Blackpool.

The £50m stalled Foxhall Village housing development has now formally been put into the ownership of Blackpool Council after a year of wrangling with the administrators.

Work stopped in October 2019 when contractor Hollinwood Homes went into administration with just 193 of the planned 410 homes built.

Now the council, which is the landlord of the site, has agreed to work exclusively with Great Places Housing Group to find a way to kickstart the development after securing it from administrators Price Waterhouse Cooper earlier in August.

The exclusivity agreement will be in place for a year while the complexities of the site are unravelled which includes checking the quality of the work done on partially finished properties.

A council report says: “The complexities have meant that the administrator has exhausted the options to dispose and has agreed to surrender the leases, thereby returning control back to the council.”

The report warns the administration “has left an information vacuum meaning it has not been possible to secure technical information in relation to the work undertaken”.

This means there is some uncertainty over the “proven quality for work to recommence. ”

It could mean some of the work already done “being condemned or require further undertakings to provide the necessary satisfaction to support the progression of the scheme.”

Foxhall Village is considered a flaship regeneration project by the council which assembled the site with the help of a £2.7m government grant, with work beginning in 2014.

Failed guesthouses were demolished to make way for the estate on two parcels of land between Central Drive, Rigby Road and Tyldesley Road where roads are named after Blackpool FC’s famous 1953 FA Cup winning team.

Great Places Housing Association already owns 79 homes on the site and is committed to a further 40 homes in the stalled phase three.

 

Person rescued from sea near Blackpool’s Central Pier

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Police, paramedics, coastguard and the RNLI were called to the incident

 

A rescue operation was launched near Blackpool's Central Pier
A rescue operation was launched near Blackpool’s Central Pier (Image: HM Coastguard Lytham)

A person has been pulled from the sea in a rescue operation at Blackpool.

Police, paramedics, a lifeboat crew, and coastguard officals were called to the incident near Central Pier at around 6.15am today.

It was reported that there was a person in the water.

RNLI Blackpool launched their D-Class lifeboat and managed to recover the person from the water and took them back to shore.

They were then passed into the care of awaiting paramedics from North West Ambulance Service.

HM Coastguard Lytham said: “We were called out at 06.17 to reports of a person in the water around the Central Pier area. We quickly arrived on scene and located the person, RNLI Blackpool launched one D-Class lifeboat and we conned them onto the person, the casualty was then recovered from the water and taken back to shore. They were then passed into the care of North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust. If you see a coastal emergency, dial and ask for the Coastguard!”

RNLI Blackpool added: “Our RNLI volunteers were called out at 6.15am this morning to a person in the sea at Central Pier. One D class lifeboat launched, found the person and brought them back to safety ashore. @NWAmbulance Blackpool Police & @HMCoastguard units also attended.”

Blackpool and Wyre councils prepare to welcome Afghan refugees as thousands flee country amid Taliban take over

Home | Blackpool Gazette

As the Taliban continues its takeover of Afghanistan, thousands of citizens have been forced to flee their homes, and Blackpool, Wyre, and Fylde are among the places called on to provide a safe haven to those in desperate need.

A young Afghan refugee in Kabul

A young Afghan refugee in Kabul

The Taliban seized power in the country two weeks before America was set to complete its withdrawal of troops following a war which spanned two decades.

Britain has opened its borders to Afghan people most at risk of persecution by the Taliban, and councils all over the country are being urged to provide shelter to such refugees.

Prime minister Boris Johnson promised around 20,000 Afghans who aided the British army are to be welcomed to the UK in coming years, with 5,000 of these expected to arrive in 2021.

He said: “We owe a debt of gratitude to all those who have worked with us to make Afghanistan a better place over the last 20 years.

“Many of them, particularly women, are now in urgent need of our help. I am proud that the UK has been able to put in place this route to help them and their families live safely in the UK.”

Armed fighters swept into Kabul, Afghanistan’s capital city, on Sunday. In a press conference two days later, the group looked forward to good relations with other countries, saying ‘animosities have come to an end and we would like to live peacefully’.

However, experts have warned that the country could again become a hotbed for terrorism.

Fears have also been raised about the future rights of Afghan women, as the Taliban promised to uphold such rights only ‘within the framework of Sharia’. Between 1996 and 2001, when the group controlled the country, strict rules were put in place in line with its interpretation of Sharia law, which included mandatory full-body burkas for women and a lack of education for girls over 10.

The new Afghan Citizens’ Resettlement Scheme will target women, children, and others under threat of persecution.

They will join other refugees from the Middle East and Northern Africa seeking sanctuary under the UK Resettlement Scheme, who could find new homes in Blackpool, Fylde and Wyre.

Both Blackpool and Wyre Councils welcomed the prospect of helping incoming Afghan people.

A Blackpool Council spokesman said: “We work in partnership with our neighbouring authority, Lancashire, to support the resettlement of refugees across the region and to ensure that they have the support they need on arrival and while they settle in to their new community. We are working with the refugee team to assist in any way we can the additional pressure that the recent call to action has highlighted.”

A Wyre Council spokesman said: “Over the last four years Wyre Council has been pleased to offer support to 11 Syrian refugee families who we’ve helped to resettle in the borough. We are currently looking to extend our support of the Government’s UK Resettlement scheme and provide support for up to five further Syrian households every two years. Additionally we are now looking to see how we can support Government Afghan relocation schemes as the situation develops.

“Our priority is to ensure that any relocated families are safe and settled and do what we can to help them become part of the local community.”

Fylde Council was approached but declined to comment.

In pictures: Red Arrows fly across Lancashire to Blackpool Airport

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The RAF Red Arrows display team used Blackpool Airport as a base yesterday

One of the Red Arrows pilots

One of the Red Arrows pilots (Image: SS Digital Images)

The spectacular Red Arrows flew over Lancashire today – to the delight of fans.

The RAF Red Arrows team were based at Blackpool Airport today as they jetted off for their display at the Isle of Man Airshow.

While the fantastic aerobatic team didn’t put on a display in Lancashire, people were invited to “make a day of it” and come to Blackpool Airport to get a glimpse of them.

The team arrived at 11.30am and left for the Isle of Man Airshow at 2.12pm.

They then flew back into Blackpool Airport at around 3pm, and they’re due to depart again at 5.30pm today.

LancsLive took a trip to Blackpool Airport to capture some images of the wonderful Red Arrows and their team including pilots, the Circus, engineers and support crews.

The Red Arrows in formation above Blackpool

The Red Arrows in formation above Blackpool

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The Red Arrows at Blackpool Airport

The Red Arrows at Blackpool Airport

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The Red Arrows leave trails in the sky above Blackpool

The Red Arrows leave trails in the sky above Blackpool

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The Red Arrows drop into Blackpool Airport in preparation for their upcoming airshow at the Isle of Man

The Red Arrows drop into Blackpool Airport in preparation for their upcoming airshow at the Isle of Man

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The support team of the Red Arrows have been hard at work

The support team of the Red Arrows have been hard at work

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A close-up view of a Red Arrow jet

A close-up view of a Red Arrow jet

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RAF workers get the Red Arrows ready for flight

RAF workers get the Red Arrows ready for flight

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The Red Arrows line up at Blackpool Airport
The Red Arrows line up at Blackpool Airport

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The Red Arrows at Hangar Three at Blackpool Airport
The Red Arrows at Hangar Three at Blackpool Airport

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A Red Arrows Circus member climbs out the plane
A Red Arrows Circus member climbs out the plane

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One of the Red Arrows pilots
One of the Red Arrows pilots

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Dozens turned out to get a glimpse of the Red Arrows at Blackpool Airport
Dozens turned out to get a glimpse of the Red Arrows at Blackpool Airport

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The Red Arrows over Blackpool Airport

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Red Arrows take off from Blackpool Airport
Red Arrows take off from Blackpool Airport

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Red Arrows prepare to leave Blackpool Airport
Red Arrows prepare to leave Blackpool Airport

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The Red Arrows on their way to the Isle of Man airshow
The Red Arrows on their way to the Isle of Man airshow

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A row of Red Arrows
A row of Red Arrows

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The Red Arrows delight crowds at Blackpool Airport as they leave the tarmac
The Red Arrows delight crowds at Blackpool Airport as they leave the tarmac

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The fantastic Red Arrows
The fantastic Red Arrows

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The Red Arrows fly in formation
The Red Arrows fly in formation

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Crowds waved as the Red Arrows flew in
Crowds waved as the Red Arrows flew in

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The amazing Red Arrows display team
The amazing Red Arrows display team

(Image: SS Digital Images)

 

 

Fantastic pictures show RAF Red Arrows at Blackpool

LancsLive - Latest news, sport, business and more from Lancashire

The aerobatic display team flew over Lancashire as they headed for their base for the day at Blackpool Airport

 

The Red Arrows return to Blackpool
The Red Arrows return to Blackpool (Image: SS Digital Images)

The world famous Red Arrows flew over Lancashire today with fans describing the fly over as “fantastic”.

The RAF Red Arrows team have been using Blackpool Airport as a base, with the jets touching down at around 11.30am.

Dozens of people gathered at the airport to get a glimpse of the iconic planes, with the stunt team even giving fans a wave and stopping to have their photos taken.

The aerobatic display team weren’t putting on a display in Lancashire, but were using the airport as a base for their performance at the Isle of Man Airshow.

Aviation fans were invited to “make a day of it” and come to Blackpool Airport to get a glimpse of them however.

The team arrived at 11.30am and left for the Isle of Man Airshow at 2.12pm.

One of the Red Arrows pilots

The RAF Red Arrows photographer Corporal Adam Fletcher captured an incredible photo of the team arriving at Blackpool which can be seen below.

The Red Arrows arrive in Blackpool
The Red Arrows arrive in Blackpool (Image: RAF Red Arrows photographer Corporal Adam Fletcher)

Onlookers were grateful to catch the Red Arrows in Lancashire today and have taken to the RAF Red Arrows Facebook page to share their excitement.

Lindsay Anne said: “Just seen them for the second time today over Lytham near Blackpool, they are awesome”

Melanie Jane Fysh wrote: “Loved seeing the arrows today especially as they fly over the house”

Vanessa Brow added: “Great to see you back flying past us as you break and come in to land…one of lifes pleasures for me!!”

Lisa Hadfield said: “We was there this morning, thank you for the waves guys”

Temporary ambulance station to be built in Blackpool

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The temporary accommodation will contain office, refreshment facilities, training and meeting rooms and locker and changing facilities

 

The site where the ambulance station will be built
The site where the ambulance station will be built

NHS bosses have been given permission to build a temporary ambulance station in Blackpool while a new state-of-the-art hub is under construction.

Permission has already been granted for a new ambulance hub to be built on land in Wellington Road following the demolition of the existing station which is no longer fit for purpose.

While the new station is being built a temporary site will be required.
Documents submitted by the North West Ambulance Service with the planning application to Blackpool Council state: “The trust currently operates from five ambulance stations in the Blackpool area and provides both Paramedic Emergency Service and Patient Transport Services.

“This results in a number of challenges in the operational management of a dispersed workforce and provides significant duplication in stores, admin functions and estate provision.

“The trust’s property portfolio in the Blackpool area ages between the early 1950s to the mid 1980s and is currently in a poor state of repair.”

What the permanent new ambulance station will look like
What the permanent new ambulance station will look like

The North West Ambulance NHS trust is one of the largest ambulance trusts in England and provides services to a population of around seven million people across a geographical area of approximately 5,400 square miles.

The plans reveal that in order to achieve its objectives the trust wants to move from a traditional ambulance station model to the more modern concept of a hub and all the benefits that this brings with it.

The trust also wants improved modern facilities for its staff and believes that this model will deliver best value for money and maximum efficiency.

The proposed development of the new Ambulance Hub will require the existing building to be vacated to a temporary ‘decant village’ on the former hospital site at Devonshire Road.

The temporary accommodation will contain office, refreshment facilities, training and meeting rooms and locker and changing facilities. There will also be a store of consumables with the main building and a separate external cage for gas bottle storage.