Lytham Windmill fenced off after weather damage to sails

Home | Blackpool Gazette

Lytham Windmill has sustained weather damage after some blustery weather late last night.

 

Damage to the Lytham Windmill sails

Damage to the Lytham Windmill sails

However, Fylde Council has mobilised today, cordoning off the structure for safety reasons today while working to secure the broken sail.

Allan Oldfield, chief executive officer of Fylde Council, sent a tweet thanking those who had reported the damage.

He said: “Thank you for reporting the weather damage to the Lytham windmill.

“The team are working on securing the broken sail while it is fenced off please stay clear for your safety.

“Updates will be posted on Fylde media thanks again for the support.”

Allan was then even contacted on Twitter by a resident asking if he needed help with raising funds towards the repairs.

The windmill, on Lytham Green, is the town’s most iconic building and images of it are often used in various logo designs by local organisations, depicting the town.

The present mill was built by the Squire of Lytham in 1805.

Major repairs were undertaken in the 1980s which transformed it after a period when it was plagued by rising damp, and today the building is a hub of local activities.

 

 

Filthy Blackpool hotel that ‘ruined’ couple’s honeymoon under investigation

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

Staff at The Alumhurst Hotel said that the rooms are ‘nice, cosy and tidy’

 

The OYO Alumhurst hotel in Blackpool
The OYO Alumhurst hotel in Blackpool

Blackpool Council is investigating The Oyo Alumhurst Hotel that left two newly-weds ‘heartbroken’ when they arrived there for their honeymoon on September 13.

The council has previously spoken out following concerns from local hoteliers and Scott Benton MP over the standard of accommodation in the resort.

A handful of hotels have been at the forefront of poor experiences over the summer, leading prominent figures to call for change.

Now, the council has confirmed that it is investigating The Oyo Alumhurst Hotel, said to have ‘ruined’ one couple’s honeymoon this month.

Sonya Cunningham said they had booked ‘a lovely apartment’ for the getaway, but after entering the accommodation was left ‘sick to her stomach’.

Elaine found chips on the window of her reservation in room 27
Elaine found chips on the window of her reservation in room 27

A Blackpool Council spokesperson said: “We have received two complaints from members of the public and we are following them up. If a customer of any business has a concern we will look into it.”

A member of staff at the Alumhurst Hotel told LancsLive: “The rooms we have are clean and tidy, they are nice, cosy and tidy.”

After getting the key to their room and going upstairs, Sonya said she ‘felt ill’ and ‘was nearly in tears’. They told a member of staff ‘it was a disgrace’ and would not be staying at the accommodation.

The newly-wed couple claim they were offered two other rooms to stay in which Sonya described as ‘absolutely filthy’ before stating: “I would not keep an animal in there let alone put my suitcases on the carpets.”

‘I’m heartbroken,’ Sonya said: “It was supposed to be our honeymoon, we ended up in a nice enough hotel although the room was small and we got ripped off because we were walk-ins.’

The ceiling of the Alumhurst Hotel
The ceiling of the Alumhurst Hotel

Elaine Williams-Jones also visited the Alumhurst Hotel on August 20. Elaine was set to stay in room 27 but says she found ‘chips on the windowsill and a dirty bathroom’ when she went in.

After a room change, Elaine also claimed that the new room was also ‘dirty’.

Elaine told LancsLive: “The room was dirty, not made up and there was rubbish still there,” she said. “The bathroom was dirty and filthy, and obviously disgusting as the carpet was dirty.”

The hotel is rated #76 out of 83 hotels in Blackpool on TripAdvisor and has one ‘Excellent’ rating against 15 ‘Terrible’ reviews out of 21 reviews on the site.

 

 

Blackpool police attempt to trace group in relation to string of robberies

Home | Blackpool Gazette

A 16-year-old from Preston and a 19-year-old from Blackpool have already been arrested in relation to a series of threats and robberies made in Blackpool on September 30.

 

Do you know the identity of any of these people?

Police patrols have been stepped up in Blackpool this evening as officers attempt to trace a group of people, wanted in connection with robberies between the Claremont area and the town centre yesterday.

CCTV images show a group of young people, including both boys and girls, that officers want to speak to, after numerous victims were threatened and had their property stolen between 5pm and 8pm.

Two people have already been arrested in connection with the offence – a 16-year-old boy from Preston on suspicion of possessing a knife/ bladed article, and a 19-year-old man from Blackpool on suspicion of affray. They both remain in custody at this time.

Detectives are now appealing for witnesses and anybody else who may be a victim to come forward.

Det Insp Jamie Lillystone, of Blackpool CID, said: “I know residents will be rightly concerned about these offences and I would like to reassure them that we have increased patrols in the area as a precaution.

“We have a team of detectives investigating these incidents and although we have made two arrests our enquiries are very much ongoing.
These are the people that police want to speak to

These are the people that police want to speak to

“We need to speak to the individuals in the CCTV still in connection with what are extremely serious offences and I would ask anybody who recognises them to get in contact with police as soon as possible.”

Anyone with information is asked to call police on 101, quoting log 1470 of September 30, 2021. Alternatively, call independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.

 

 

Gas storage at Lytham wine bar ‘could have had disastrous results’

Home | Blackpool Gazette

The storage of gas in the cellar of a Lytham champagne and cocktail bar could have led to disaster, a court heard.

 

Gas cylinders were left in such an insecure manner they could have toppled over posing a leak risk which prosecutor Julian King said could have had disastrous results.

CCM Bar Company, which owns Capri, based in a Grade Two listed building on Dicconson Terrace, Lytham, pleaded guilty to a total of 11 charges brought by Fylde Council under the Health and Safety and Food Hygiene Act.

The company was fined and ordered to pay costs totalling £19,524 by Blackpool Magistrates.

Capri in Dicconson Terrace, Lytham

Capri in Dicconson Terrace, Lytham

Sentencing the company bench chair Mrs Jean Adam said: “The gas cylinder offence was by far the most concerning.”

The prosecutor told how council health officers visited the popular outdoor and indoor drinking and eating spot first of all in April 2019.

“They found significant issues at the premises to commence proceedings,” said Mr King. “Food debris and dirt was noted. There were no towels in a dispenser and taps were dirty.”

He said that in a food dry store area there were open packets and unlabelled containers. There was also dirt.

There was no light in the walk-in fridge and inside, food was unlabelled. In the freezer, food was also without labels and turkey found past its use-by date.

He went onto to describe the possible risk of cross contamination by using a vac pac machine for fresh and cooked foods. There was fat dripping from a food range and a cooker top was cracked.

The kitchen microwave also had food encrusted in it. There were also damaged floor tiles.

In the women’s toilets, the hot water supply was poor, the staff toilet area smelled unpleasant and was dirty and one toilet was blocked.

As a result, Capri which sold Dom Perignon champagne at £200 a bottle, was given a zero-star rating.

Improvement notices were served on the owners and two directors interviewed under caution.

A second inspection revealed some work had been carried out but not enough and it was only in June this year that a four- star rating was given to Capri.

Mr King added: “The company fell far short of the standards expected and that was over a significant period of time.

“It was a systematic failure. However there have been no reports of ill health being reported.”

The company’s lawyer Gareth Price said that those improvements had cost £12,000.

He told the court: ”Significant improvements have been made although the directors realise their response was not as quick as it might have been.

“There is now a proper level of concern and daily checking system in place.

“The company continued to trade in difficult circumstances.”

A spokesman for the CCM Bar Company said: “Any and all concerns identified in the initial Envorinmental Health Officer report back in April 2019 were rectified within 24 hours of the inspection.

“We have since introduced a new management team and worked closely with one of the UK’s leading providers of Health & Safety services to implement the necessary processes and training to achieve full compliance, which has been reflected in our most recent score.”

It is thanks to our loyal readers that we can continue to provide the trusted news, analysis and insight that matters to you. For unlimited access to our unrivalled local reporting, you can take out a subscription here and help support the work of our dedicated team of reporters.

 

 

Teenager arrested in Blackpool town centre after being found with knife

Home | Blackpool Gazette

This potentially lethal knife was found in the possession of a teenage boy in Blackpool last night when police searched him after a short chase on foot.

 

The knife removed from a youth in Blackpool by police last night

The knife removed from a youth in Blackpool by police last night

The youth, who also had what is believed to be a quantity of class A drugs with him, has been arrested and is still in police custody.

Police said: “Tonight Team 3 have been in the town centre on Nightsafe when they have been given information that a male has been in possession of a knife.

“Officers have attempted to stop the male and after a short foot chase the male has been detained and this knife has been found in his waistband and he’s also had five snap bags believed to be cocaine.

“A 19 year old male has been arrested for being in possession of an offensive weapon and possession with intent to supply Class A.

“Another dangerous weapon has been taken off our streets.”

 

 

Blackpool cancer survivor who became first woman to complete Sea to Summit triathlon is named Brave Briton finalist

Home | Blackpool Gazette

A Blackpool cancer survivor has made the final of an awards scheme which honours the country’s bravest people.

 

Andrea Mason has been named as a finalist in the Amplifon Awards For Brave Britons 2021 after becoming the first woman to complete the gruelling ‘Sea to Summit’ triathlon.

Andrea, who swam, cycled, and ran more than 330 miles in just five days, has reached the final four of the Act Of Courage category in global-hearing specialist Amplifon’s search for the

‘Best of British’ heroes.

Andrea Mason, from Blackpool

Andrea Mason, from Blackpool

The 40-year-old hardly slept during the “insane” challenge in the French Alps.

It involved swimming around the circumference of Lake Annecy, and cycling and running up Mont Blanc – at 15,774 ft the second highest peak in Europe.

Fleetwood dad running London Marathon for kidney charity after son’s operation

She battled through severe pain, cramping, and hallucinations but completed the race in a four days, 23 hours, and 41 minutes.

Andrea said: “Because this wasn’t a race I spent most of the time on my own.

“If you are in a race you have other people to go against but alone, you’re doing it by yourself.”

But for Andrea, who splits her time between Blackpool and Chamonix in France, the challenge was not just a test of her stamina.

She said: “My main motivation was raising awareness about cervical cancer which I was diagnosed with in 2017.

“For me it was important to use this as a platform to encourage other women and young girls not to miss their cervical test which I had ignored over the years.”

Three years ago, Andrea was diagnosed with severe endometriosis and had to undergo a hysterectomy which was when doctors discovered she had cervical cancer.

After she recovered, she set up the charity Lady Talk Matters to raise awareness and normalise the conversation surrounding female reproductive matters.

She said: “The Sea To Summit challenge was also a way of coping with my illness. The endurance challenge gave me something to focus on while I was in hospital. They gave me a goal

for getting better.”

The Amplifon Awards For Brave Britons are in their sixth year.

Andrea will find out if she has won at a virtual awards ceremony hosted by BBC Radio 5 Live presenter Rachel Burden on October 5. Falklands War hero Simon Weston will be guest of honour.

 

 

Blackpool barber Stuart retires after nearly 60 years in trade

Home | Blackpool Gazette

Blackpool barber Stuart Taylor is hanging up his scissors after nearly 60 years in the trade – 30 of them at his last salon.

 

Barber Stuart Taylor is retiring after 30 years and plans to auction the collection of foreign money on his wall for charity.

Barber Stuart Taylor is retiring after 30 years and plans to auction the collection of foreign money on his wall for charity.

The 75 year old has been cutting and styling hair at the Stuart barber shop on Waterloo Road, South Shore, since 1991.

But a bout of ill health, a mystery ailment which caused his limbs to swell up, has persuaded Stuart to retire a little sooner than expected – he planned to close the shop around Christmas time.

And with the closure of the long-running business, Stuart now plans to sell off one of the most eye-catching features of the premises – the huge collection of hundreds of foreign and vintage bank notes which were displayed on one of the walls.

Some of the notes in Stuart's shop in South Shore, Blackpool, which have now been taken down

Some of the notes in Stuart’s shop in South Shore, Blackpool, which have now been taken down

The idea is to auction the notes – brought in by customers after a globe-trotting banker pal began giving him spare notes and started a trend – and raise money for two causes close to his heart, Cancer Research and the Alzheimer Trust.

Bringing down the curtains on his career has allowed Stuart to reflect on the many hair fashions he has seen come and go over the past six decades, giving him a barber’s view on British culture.

Stuart, of Wilson Square, Norbreck, said: “I’ve seen all these hair styles come and go.

“When I started as a 16 year old apprentice in this town, the fashion was for short back and sides with a side parting and a little dash of hair product to keep it in place.

“Just before I retired I was cutting young lads’ hair in the very same style because people like Christiano Ronaldo have brought it back into fashion – sixty years later!

“Over the years we have Teddy Boy or Elvis cuts with big quiffs, then we briefly had the short Perry Como look, then lads wanted something similar to the Beatles, then a longer cut, then a much longer hippy style – and then gradually men’s hair started to get shorter again. I’ve done them all and it depends what pop star or footballer is currently in fashion.

“Curly perms were the big thing in the 1970s, men wanted to look like Kevin Keegan and the star football players, but I used to send those customers to the lady’s hairdressers up the road!

“I will miss the job because I’ve made many friends and good acquaintances; being a barber you sometimes end up being a confident and counsellor, because some men tell you things about their life while you’re giving them a haircut.”

Blackburn-born Stuart moved to the resort when he was seven and at 16 he was apprenticed to a barber’s shop ironically called Stuart, as it was run by veteran cutter Stuart Moss.

After learning the trade he eventually opened his own shop on Park Road, before moving to Whitegate Drive and then the now familiar shop on Waterloo Road.

Stuart is married to Heather but sadly she now has dementia and needs professional care.

He has a 39 year old daughter, Sara, who lives in Widnes, Cheshire, but lost his son, Alan, to cancer.

His grandchildren are Ava, Alex and Aaron, Elizabeth and Sheree. Tragically, another grandchild, Michael, died in an accident.

Stuart, who has now taken down the bank notes, said: “That’s why I want to raise money for those two charities.

“I have notes from all over the world – Singapore, Malaysia, Australia, New Zealand, Turkey, Italy.

“I’m hoping to sort out some sort of auction and sell them as a job lot. It will be money for good causes, in more ways than one!”

 

Northern Ireland boss expecting Blackpool’s in-form Shayne Lavery to get better and better

Home | Blackpool Gazette

Northern Ireland boss Ian Baraclough expects in-form Blackpool striker Shayne Lavery to get better and better for both club and country.

 

The 22-year-old notched his seventh goal of the campaign on Tuesday night as Blackpool were held to a 1-1 draw against Hull City.

The former Linfield and Everton man will be looking to build on that record on Saturday, where Blackpool take on Lancashire rivals Blackburn Rovers at Bloomfield Road, before he jets off on international duty.

“For everybody, whether they are young and old (in our squad), they can learn from Shayne,” Baraclough said.

“I actually spoke to (Hull striker and Northern Ireland teammate) Josh Magennis about him and to see how he performed in September for us was brilliant for everyone.

“Shayne energises everyone and gets us up the pitch quicker. He has a lot of facets to his game he needs to work on and he knows that.

“But to have someone like him coming through is great for everybody. I think he is an inspiration for players in Northern Ireland who want to play across the water.”

Ian Baraclough was impressed by Lavery's recent strike against Barnsley

Ian Baraclough was impressed by Lavery’s recent strike against Barnsley

Baraclough was particularly pleased to see Lavery’s winner against Barnsley at the weekend, a clever run rounded off by a clinical finish from a tight angle inside the area.

“I was so pleased to see his goal last weekend because it was a similar situation he will find himself in many times, one on one with the goalkeeper,” he said.

“He made a great run and produced a side-footed finish with pace. He’s a striker who keeps coming back for more and to see that goal (against Barnsley) was great for me.

“It will lift his confidence and he has carried on his great form at Blackpool, which is great for the group.”

Lavery scored his first international goal last month in Northern Ireland’s 4-1 win against Lithuania.

Baraclough’s side face Switzerland, who are three points ahead of them in their World Cup qualifying group, in Geneva on October 9.

This is followed by a trip to Bulgaria three days later.

Elsewhere, Kenny Dougall is expected to receive another call-up to the Australian squad for their upcoming games against Oman and Japan.

 

 

Here is where you can get fuel in Blackpool and the Fylde coast on Saturday, October 2 – and where has run out

Home | Blackpool Gazette

Fuel shortage fears are still prompting queues at many Fylde coast service stations, although many garages report that they currently have both petrol and diesel today

 

There have been mixed messages about the situation, with industry leaders saying the situation remains serious, while some Government ministers have struck a more upbeat tone.

The Petrol Retailers Association has warned that the fuel shortages are getting worse in some parts of the country, while Health Secretary Sajid David said things were getting better in many places and that the military was being deployed as a precaution.

It has been announced that military drivers will be deployed to deliver fuel to garage forecourts from Monday.

Traffic was backed up in Thornton yesterday as people queued for fuel.

Traffic was backed up in Thornton yesterday as people queued for fuel.

Almost 200 military personnel, including 100 drivers, have been undertaking training at haulier sites.

Yesterday it was announced that motorists could face another “week or so” of long queues at the filling stations as demand for petrol remains strong.

Policing minister Kit Malthouse said there needs to be an “improvement” in the situation in the coming days and that Boris Johnson stands ready to review matters if there is any deterioration.

Here are the Blackpool and Fylde coast garages which have let us know how they fared for fuel today (Saturday, October 2 – correct as of 10.30am).

Shell in Talbot Road, Blackpool currently has both petrol and diesel.

Sainsburys in Buchanan Street, Blackpool has both petrol and diesel

Esso in Central Drive, Blackpool, has no petrol or diesel.

Esso in Devonshire Road, Blackpool has both petrol and diesel.

Shell in Preston New Road, Blackpool, currently only has V-Power unleaded petrol

Texaco in Poulton Road, Blackpool has run out of both petrol and diesel

Tesco in Clifton Retail Park is unable to provide an update at this time.

Esso in Preston New Road, Blackpool is expecting a delivery of both petrol and diesel at noon today.

Esso on Collingwood Ave, Blackpool currently has both petrol and diesel

Shell in Hatfield Ave, Fleetwood declined to comment

Shell in Heyhouses Lane, St Annes has all fuel available for the rest of the day

We were unable to confirm supplies at Asda and Morrisons as the supermarket are no longer taking calls.

 

 

Everything you need to know about the big annual panto at Fleetwood – including a former soap star

Home | Blackpool Gazette

It will soon be time for panto season and Fleetwood’s annual show at the Marine Hall is returning this year after the pandemic caused last season’s fun to be cancelled.

 

Aladdin is coming to Fleetwood

Aladdin is coming to Fleetwood

Panto fans can fly away on a magic carpet ride for a trip to see perennial favourite Aladdin at the seafront venue from Thursday December 9 until Sunday December 12.

And headlining the cast will be soap star legend Peter Amory, best known for his role as the villainous ‘Chris Tate’ in Emmerdale, who is playing the evil Abanazar.

There will be hilarious comedy, songs, dancing, audience participation and more as the perfect run up to Christmas.

The Marine Hall have once again teamed up with North West pantomime company Trio Entertainment to bring the much loved story of ‘Aladdin’ to life this Christmas.

Peter said: “I am really looking forward to appearing in Aladdin this Christmas.

“I have played panto villains a number of times and I love the experience and can’t wait to get back into the pantomime mood again…it’s going to be great fun!”

Producer Kevin Brown adds “We cannot wait to transform the Marine Hall into a magical festive space filled with lots of panto fun this December!”

The cast also includes Tom Balmont, Natasha Griffith, Sofia Klimovsky and Tiago de Souza.

Tricked into going into the cave of wonders by the evil Abanazar, Aladdin finds himself trapped in a cave with nothing but a dirty old lamp and no way out.

When Aladdin rubs the lamp a magical Genie appears to save the day and rescue him from the cave and grants him three extravagant wishes.

Aladdin is joined by his wacky washerwoman mother Widow Twankey along with the beautiful Princess Jasmine, her guardian the crazy but strict police chief and a magical spirit to guide our hero along the way on this magical carpet ride of a pantomime!

Tickets are £9.50 for Adults, £9 for Children and a Family ticket is £34 for four people.

Group booking discounts for 10 people or more are also available.

Show times are as follows:

Thursday December 9 – 10am and 2pm; Friday December 10 – 10am and 7pm; Saturday December 11 1pm and 7pm; Sunday December 12 at 1pm

You can book by calling the Marine Hall Box Office on (01253) 887693 Monday to Friday 10am until 3pm or by visiting the website www.wyretheatres.co.uk

 

 

Turf-cutting ceremony signals a new era for Lytham St Annes High School

Home | Blackpool Gazette

Work has begun on rebuilding Fylde’s largest school.

 

Lytham St Annes High School pupils, headteacher Ray Baker, Fylde MP Mark Menzies, Fylde mayor Coun Elaine Silverwood, representatives of the Department for Education and staff from construction firm Wates Group gathered for a turf cutting ceremony at the school in Ansdell to mark the start of the development.

The building will be net-carbon-zero once construction is complete and is one of the first schemes in the Government’s School Rebuilding Programme to reach the construction phase.

Headteacher Ray Baker said: “LSA is a wonderfully happy, vibrant and exciting school. Knowing that we will be able to match our buildings and general environment to our ambition is brilliant.

Lytham St Annes High School pupils and staff with guests at the ceremony

Lytham St Annes High School pupils and staff with guests at the ceremony

Lytham St Annes High School to be demolished as new school plan is approved

“Simple things like improved toilet access, catering facilities and the more efficient use of large spaces will make a great difference.

“We have designed something here that our students will be proud of. It is something that we think the local community can be proud of too.

“The fact that our current building has been able to make the most of our tired surroundings is testament to the behaviour of our children and care of our site team.

“Money that was once reserved for daily maintenance can be reduced and diverted into other aspects of school life.

Modern construction techniques mean the new two-storey school block and sports hall will be ready for pupils in 2023. The building will make use of passive ventilation chimneys, mechanical heat recovery systems and on-site offsetting of energy use through a bisolar roof system.

Mr Menzies said: “I know the excellent leadership and teaching staff will ensure young people in Lytham and St Annes get the most out of this investment.

“This is a school at the heart of the community and with this new building will go from strength to strength offering young people the very best start in life.”

Department for Education’s operations group director general Mike Green and Sir James Wates of Wates Group were among those at the turf cutting ceremony.

Gary Campbell-Dykes, education director at Wates, said: “We are delighted to be supporting the Department for Education on this exciting and innovative project.”

The building is one of 100 projects funded by a £2bn investment through the School Rebuilding Programme.

It is thanks to our loyal readers that we can continue to provide the trusted news, analysis and insight that matters to you. For unlimited access to our unrivalled local reporting, you can take out a subscription here and help support the work of our dedicated team of reporters.

 

 

Work begins on £21m extension to Blackpool’s Houndshill Shopping Centre

Home | Blackpool Gazette

The first spades in the ground are doing their work as the £21m project to bring the biggest immersive cinema screen in the county to Blackpool’s Houndshill centre has begun.

 

The Phase Two development of the shopping centre will see a new 22,500sq ft Wilko store plus two restaurants on the ground floor of the new building, with a nine screen cinema on the first floor.

The work is under way on the north side of the existing centre, where the Tower Street carpark used to be, after nine years since the project was first mooted.

Excavators are preparing the foundations of the new building and utilities work due to be finished by Winter 2022.

The Houndshill Phase 2 project partners officially break ground on the £21m scheme

The Houndshill Phase 2 project partners officially break ground on the £21m scheme

The Tower Street car has gone, but the Houndshill car park will remain open.

A three way traffic light system is in place in the area and drivers face some delays. Bosses from the companies involved in the project and the council were on site to perform the official ground breaking at the 0.5 acre site.

The project will create more than 260 construction jobs, 100 other jobs and aims to produce an increase of 1.2m shoppers and visitors to the Houndshill centre.

The move of the Wilko store to the site from Talbot Road is key to the redevelopment of the Talbot Gateway area and this latest building project is hailed as another significant improvement for Blackpool.

A computer generated image of how the building will look

A computer generated image of how the building will look

Three key deals were signed in February that have enabled the scheme to commence, the council’s acquisition of Tower Street car park, a lease agreement for a new 22,500 sq ft Wilko store and a deal with MMC Cinemas for a nine screen, 850 seat, 40,500 sq ft multi-media cinema complex, including the biggest immersive screen in Lancashire.

Coun Lynn Williams, leader of Blackpool Council said: “It is exciting to see that things are under way and will be great to have Wilcos back along with this wonderful cinema for residents and visitors alike.

“We are committed to diversifying and modernising the town centre to encourage residents and visitors to choose Blackpool as their main shopping centre of choice.

“This means celebrating our well known heritage buildings, driving footfall to new areas of the town and encouraging people to stay for longer.

Foundation work and work on utilities in the area are the first job

Foundation work and work on utilities in the area are the first job

“The Houndshill Phase 2 extension will deliver a new range of high-quality entertainment, retail and leisure choices that meet the needs of the modern family, which will complement the existing shops at the Houndshill, boost both day and night time business, and increase the amount of time and money spent in the town centre.

“For the town centre to prosper we must continue to provide new reasons to attract resident and visitors and to extend the time of visits into the evening with more entertainment and leisure choices that the whole family can enjoy.

“New purpose-built, ultra- modern buildings that can adapt to ever-evolving consumer aspirations are important and will shape how we use our town centre in the future.”

She added that the town could not sit on its laurels and must continually drive forward and invest in the future.

The new building will be on the north side of the existing Houndshill where the Tower Street car park used to be

The new building will be on the north side of the existing Houndshill where the Tower Street car park used to be

The overall scheme got £5m of funding from the Government’s COVID-19 Getting Building Fund, following formal approval by the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership in October last year.

Blackpool Council will fund the rest through borrowing.

Debbie Francis, chairman of the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership said: “It is great that the Houndshill scheme was able to secure £5m from the Getting Building Fund.

“This will undoubtedly enhance Blackpool’s leisure and retail offer and complement existing investment into the town to achieve transformational change.

“The leisure and tourism sectors have been significantly affected by the pandemic and so it is wonderful news to see work starting on site and the scheme coming one step closer to fruition and attracting visitors to the area.”

The council bought the Houndshill Shopping Centre in for £47.6m in November 2019 as part of its long-term strategy to revitalise the town centre.

Another image of how it will look

Another image of how it will look

The phase two extension will also include two restaurants totalling 3,760 sq ft and the council said it is in talks with potential leisure operators for these units but remains open to enquiries.

James Dawling group property director at Wilco said: “We had good trade at the store over near the council offices in Talbot Road, but it was a little bit big for us.

“Everything is coming towards this part of town and there were plans to redevelop that part of town, so coming here is great and makes a lot of sense.

“It has taken some time to get the deal done, thanks to Covid but the council are a great team to work with.”

He said Wilco will be ready to move there during 2023 and that the store would have a link through into the main shopping centre.

The lead contractor on the project is Belfast-based Graham, with CBRE as the project manager and cost consultant for the scheme.

Stephen Van den Hoek, regional operations director for Graham said: “This next phase of works will deliver much-needed commercial space to Blackpool, driving footfall through the creation of new retail and leisure opportunities for visitors and the local community.

“Our team is excited to bring the vision to life over the course of the construction programme, which on completion will create a high quality destination for the town centre to flourish.”

Gareth Robertson, director at CBRE said: “CBRE’s Project and Cost Management team have worked closely with Blackpool Council, deploying our broad range of capabilities in support of the acquisition, funding and procurement phases of this fantastic scheme and valuable addition to the Town’s amenities.

“We look forward to the construction phase of the project and continuing to work collaboratively with Blackpool Council, their project stakeholders, new and existing tenants and their construction partner John Graham Construction.”

The new cinema will have nine screens, including the 850 seats and the huge Premium Large Screen Format, IMAX-style screen.

The company behind it said it will be a purpose built attraction tailored to Blackpool and will attract people into town from across the county.

It will also have conferenceing facilities, retractable seating in some areas and be a flexible use development.

John Sullivan, founder of MMC Cinemas who has developed cinemas world-wide for more than 30 years, said: “Finally seeing the ground-breaking on this project is the result of a lot of hard work already done, but marks the official start of a new cinematic journey for Blackpool.

“We’re committed to making sure this new complex pays homage to the heritage of this exceptional town. “In t

he independent MMC location, we’re not bringing a ready-made cinema brand to Blackpool; Blackpool will help to shape this flexible arts and community space.

“We’re already in discussions with local interest groups and we want to hear from more. “This will be a place where people can come together and make use of this flexible space for education, leisure, shopping, entertainment, workspaces and so much more.”

 

 

Blackpool FC fans’ groups issue joint-statement over match-day behaviour problem

Home | Blackpool Gazette

At a meeting between Blackpool FC and supporters’ groups this week, the groups elected to make a joint-statement to fans on the issue of the recent antisocial behaviour by a minority inside and around Bloomfield Road on match days.

 

The statement reads: “Blackpool supporters will probably be aware of the extensive media coverage the club has been getting in recent days and weeks, focused on multiple instances of poor behaviour by a small minority of our own fans.

“This culminated at Saturday’s game with Barnsley, with our victory being marred by fans throwing missiles and attacking visiting supporters and their coaches.

Blackpool fans' groups have echoed the fears of the club over the consequences of misbehaviour by a small minority of supporters

Blackpool fans’ groups have echoed the fears of the club over the consequences of misbehaviour by a small minority of supporters

“Earlier in the week the club issued a strong statement condemning these events and putting supporters on notice that further action could follow.

“On Wednesday the club’s chief executive met with representatives of all the main supporters’ groups to discuss the problem and its implications.

“These events are not consequence-free. The club will ban individuals when they can be identified, but we are already attracting the attention of the footballing authorities and financial penalties may follow.

“These might get more and more punitive if the problem is not dealt with and could run into hundreds of thousands of pounds very quickly.

“The police are taking a close interest and if behaviour does not improve, they may well insist upon more games being identified as high category matches and on reduced ticketing allocations for visiting fans.

“In the current climate they can’t be expected to sanction allowing home fans into the East Stand for big games either. All of this has financial implications for the club, who naturally want to invest in the squad and the club’s infrastructure.

“Higher police costs, reduced crowds and EFL fines could all negatively impact their ability to do so.

“Equally importantly, having in recent years built a reputation in football for all the right reasons, we are as a fan base in danger of throwing it away because of the antics of a few people.

“The undersigned groups all understand the club’s position and are determined to support its response to the problem.

“That includes supporting the steps the club intends to take, but we must also confront bad behaviour ourselves where we see it and help club officials in identifying those who won’t or can’t behave properly.

“Blackpool FC is lucky to have an owner and board who are ambitious and prepared to invest in the club’s future. We need to do our collective bit to support them, and that includes being ambassadors for the club home and away.”

This statement is issued on Friday October 1 on behalf of the following fans’ groups:

Blackpool Association of Supporters in London

Blackpool Supporters Association

Blackpool Supporters’ Trust

Leyland & Chorley Seasiders

Manchester Seasiders

Muckers Support Group

Tangerine Knights

Yorkshire Seasiders

 

 

Blackpool woman ‘freaks out’ after finding HUGE spider in her Chicken Legend – this is what McDonald’s had to say about it

Home | Blackpool Gazette

A Blackpool woman was left “freaking out” after finding a long-legged spider in her McDonald’s meal.

 

Rachel Watkins plucked the spindly-legged spider from her Chicken Legend after visiting the 24-hour drive-thru in Rigby Road at 4.30am on Saturday (September 25).

Hungrily taking a bite, Rachel was disgusted to notice what she thought was a stray hair sticking out of her chicken roll.

But her disgust turned into panic when she realised what it actually was that she had nearly put into her mouth.

After reviewing CCTV footage of her order being prepared inside the McDonald's branch in Rigby Road, Blackpool, the manager concluded that the spider had most likely arrived inside a sealed bag of lettuce

After reviewing CCTV footage of her order being prepared inside the McDonald’s branch in Rigby Road, Blackpool, the manager concluded that the spider had most likely arrived inside a sealed bag of lettuce

“I instantly spat out the piece of chicken I already had in my mouth, “said Rachel.

“I thought it was hair, but when I tried to pull it out, it wouldn’t move. So I pulled it again and next was something I would never of imagined seeing in my food!

“It was a HUGE spider! Luckily it was dead, but even dead I panicked and started freaking out and had a panic attack.”

Fuming and feeling nauseous after her close encounter with the creepy crawly in her food, Rachel rang McDonald’s and told them what she had found.
Rachel Watkins said she plucked this spindly-legged spider from her Chicken Legend after visiting the 24-hour McDonald's drive-thru in Rigby Road, Blackpool at 4.30am on Saturday (September 25)

Rachel Watkins said she plucked this spindly-legged spider from her Chicken Legend after visiting the 24-hour McDonald’s drive-thru in Rigby Road, Blackpool at 4.30am on Saturday (September 25)

The restaurant said it was ‘concerned’ and launched an ‘internal investigation’ to establish how the spider found its way inside the Chicken Legend.

After reviewing CCTV footage of her order being prepared inside the Rigby Road branch, the manager concluded that the spider had most likely arrived inside a sealed bag of lettuce.

McDonald’s has apologised to Rachel and has offered her a full refund and two free meals and desserts.

What did McDonald’s say?

McDonald’s management told Rachel: “I’m sorry your last visit to our restaurant wasn’t a satisfactory visit. I can only apologise for the incident with your last order and I can assure you that an internal investigation is under way as to how this has happened.

“We are in communication with our suppliers as after reviewing the CCTV we believe this has come in with the lettuce in a sealed bag and the crew members haven’t noticed it when they were preparing the order.

“We will continue to investigate this in store retraining will take place for all the members of staff involved with preparing your order.”

 

 

Appeal by police over street robberies in Blackpool

Home | Blackpool Gazette

Do you recognise these individuals?

 

Police in Blackpool want to speak to these individuals about robberies in the resort

Police in Blackpool want to speak to these individuals about robberies in the resort

Police want to speak to them in connection with a series of robberies in Blackpool, which happened between 5pm and 8pm yesterday (September 30) between the town centre and Claremont areas.

The robberies involved a group of people who have approached and threatened a number of victims before stealing property.

Two people have been arrested in connection with the offence.

A 16-year-old boy from Preston has been arrested on suspicion of possessing a knife/ bladed article, and a 19-year-old man from Blackpool has been arrested on suspicion of affray. They both remain in custody at this time.

Detectives are now appealing for witnesses and anybody else who maybe a victim to come forward.

Det Insp Jamie Lillystone, of Blackpool CID, said: “I know residents will be rightly concerned about these offences and I would like to reassure them that we have increased patrols in the area as a precaution.

“We have a team of detectives investigating these incidents and although we have made two arrests our enquiries are very much ongoing.

“We need to speak to the individuals in the CCTV still in connection with what are extremely serious offences and I would ask anybody who recognises them to get in contact with police as soon as possible.”

Anyone with information is asked to call police on 101, quoting log 1470 of September 30, 2021. Alternatively call independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.

 

 

Nine men arrested and victim in hospital after stabbing outside Ma Kelly’s in Blackpool

Home | Blackpool Gazette

Nine men have been arrested on suspicion of attempted murder after a man was stabbed in Blackpool last night.

 

A 19-year-old man, from Blackpool, was repeatedly stabbed outside Ma Kelly's in Talbot Road, Blackpool at around midnight last night. Pic: Google

A 19-year-old man, from Blackpool, was repeatedly stabbed outside Ma Kelly’s in Talbot Road, Blackpool at around midnight last night. Pic: Google

Police and paramedics were called after reports of a fight outside Ma Kelly’s in Talbot Road at around midnight.

A 19-year-old man, from Blackpool, suffered a number of stab wounds and was taken to hospital where he remains in a serious but stable condition.

Nine men, aged between 19 and 36 and all from London, have been arrested on suspicion of attempted murder and are currently in custody.

Det Insp Abi Finch-Hall, of Blackpool CID, said: “This incident has left a young man with some serious injuries and while we have made a number of arrests our enquiries are very much ongoing

“I would appeal for anyone who has any information or who witnessed the incident itself to come forward and speak to us.”

Anyone with information should contact police on 101 quoting log 0001 of Wednesday, September 29.

Alternatively contact independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.