Dad and stepdad of Jordan Banks take part in memorial match with self-proclaimed ‘unfit, overweight’ footballers

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The dad and step-dad of Jordan Banks joined a group of self-proclaimed ‘unfit, overweight’ footy fans for a special Father’s Day match in memory of their son.

 

The 'Not Match Fit' charity game in memory of Jordan Banks. Picture by Martin Bostock

The ‘Not Match Fit’ charity game in memory of Jordan Banks. Picture by Martin Bostock

Matt Banks and Dan Begg took part in a kick-about with the ‘Not Match Fit’ club at Poolfoot Farm yesterday to raise money for Brian House children’s hospice in honor of Jordan, who was tragically killed by lightning on May 11.

Unathletico Madrid beat Hardley Athletic 6-3 in a 90-minute showdown in which players were allowed to substitute at will, just in case.

Event organiser John Chamberlain, 51, of Rosefinch Way, said: “It just happened that one of the lads had booked the pitch when the unfortunate, tragic thing happened with Jordan. Immediately I had five or six of our players come to me saying we should do it for charity in memory of him, and that was it. As soon as I put it to the group they were all up for it.

The 'Not Match Fit' charity game in memory of Jordan Banks. Picture by Martin BostockThe ‘Not Match Fit’ charity game in memory of Jordan Banks. Picture by Martin Bostock

“We had Jordan’s dad, Matt, and stepdad, Dan, playing with us and we had a great time – though I’m sure they’d question my managing skills!

“It was Father’s Day, and obviously they should have spent it with Jordan. But they spent it with us, and it was a family affair. Both Dan and Matt brought their families, players brought their children along, so we had a good crowd out there. It was nice to see everybody coming together on such a beautiful sunny day.”

The Not Match Fit club raised more than £1,000 ahead of the big game, and with several buckets filled to the brim with donations on the day it is hoped they raised a grand total of around £1,200 for Brian House.
The 'Not Match Fit' charity game in memory of Jordan Banks. Picture by Martin Bostock
The ‘Not Match Fit’ charity game in memory of Jordan Banks. Picture by Martin Bostock

The club, which meets at Bispham college on Mondays and Wednesdays, is made up of 60 amateur footballers aged between 18 and 55, who either used to play for local leagues in their younger days, or would not feel able to play competitively.

John said: “Without being PC, it’s your overweight people, unfit people, older people – all the people who aren’t suited to Saturday morning football but, of course, still love the game.

“This is a football club for people who don’t feel able to play the league, but are happy to play with us because we’re all the same. We’re fat, we’re unfit, we’re old, and we fit in well.

“We decided, instead of the seven-a-side, one hour match we normally do, we’d do an 11-a-side 90-minute match for Jordan. It’s something we had not done before, and we didn’t know if we would manage 90 minutes. There were 30 players from our league, and we subbed on and off whenever we wanted, because some of us were puffing and blowing after two minutes!

“The sun was out and it was fantastic, but it was hard work because none of us are in great shape. But it was really enjoyable, and we came away with the decision that we’re going to do it every year for charity. Everybody was really beaming afterwards. We were all sunburned, but we loved it.”

Brian House community fundraising manager, Michelle Lonican, said: “A huge thank you and well done to everyone at Not Match Fit for putting on a wonderful event in memory of Jordan to raise money for our children’s hospice.

“We are incredibly grateful to all those in our community who are supporting Brian House, as we continue to count the cost of Covid whilst supporting the Fylde Coast’s most fragile children and their families.”

Lidl contractor accused of ‘reversing into’ Blackpool councillor with tarmac truck during night-time road resurfacing

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Contractors sparked fury by working on a supermarket car park at 1.15am on Sunday – before allegedly driving their machinery at a councillor.

 

Workers were challenged outside Lidl in Anchorsholme by Coun Paul Galley – who was filming on a mobile phone after being alerted by neighbours – while noisily working in the residential area.

The Tory politician accused one worker of ordering him to “move” before slowly reversing his tarmacking vehicle into his leg.

Lidl claimed the workers were there “without permission” and said it was “extremely concerned to hear about the activity on site at that hour” and “also about the apparent behaviour of the contractors present”.

Anchorsholme councillor Paul Galley accused a contractor working on Lidl car park of "reversing into" him with a tarmacking vehicle, and demanded an apology for residents from the retailer.Anchorsholme councillor Paul Galley accused a contractor working on Lidl car park of “reversing into” him with a tarmacking vehicle, and demanded an apology for residents from the retailer.

The retail giant pledged an investigation and said sorry to those kept awake – or woken up – by the racket.

Coun Galley said: “These contractors were ignoring every health and safety practice on a working site I’ve ever seen. I’m so pleased I managed to get it all on video because otherwise I don’t think anyone would have believed it.

“I’d been contacted by some residents in the area about the noise and at first I thought it may have been a delivery but I walked over from my house nearby to see what was going on.

“When I arrived I asked to speak to the site foreman but I was sworn at.
Video footage captured by councillor Paul Galley showed numerous contractors and vehicles working loudly on resurfacing Lidl car park in the middle of the night.
Video footage captured by councillor Paul Galley showed numerous contractors and vehicles working loudly on resurfacing Lidl car park in the middle of the night.

“Another resident was also sworn at and they started singing at them too.

“One of the contractors shouted ‘move’ at me before driving his vehicle into the side of my leg. It was only the next day that I saw a mark on my clothes from where that had happened.

“When someone comes onto your site without the correct PPE everything should stop and the issue should be dealt with. There was no proper management of that site at all.”

The store, in Anchorsholme Lane West, has been swamped by controversy in recent months. It recently evicted tenants from two homes it owns – in Cherrywood Avenue and Anchorsholme Lane West – and plans to demolish them, despite its bid to extend its car park being knocked back by town hall planners.

Coun Paul Galley said a contractor driving a tarmacking vehicle on Lidl car park in Anchorsholme deliberately reversed into the side of his leg, marking his clothes. Picture: Coun Paul Galley

Coun Paul Galley said a contractor driving a tarmacking vehicle on Lidl car park in Anchorsholme deliberately reversed into the side of his leg, marking his clothes. Picture: Coun Paul Galley

Anchorsholme Lidl resubmits plan to demolish houses

A spokesman for Lidl added: “We are aware of works that took place at our Anchorsholme site early Sunday morning without the permission of Lidl GB.

“We were extremely concerned to hear about the activity on site at that hour, but also about the apparent behavior of the contractors present.

“Upon learning of this, our local property team immediately launched a full investigation alongside the contractor.

Video footage captured by councillor Paul Galley showed numerous large vehicles working through the night at Anchorsholme's Lidl supermarket.Video footage captured by councilor Paul Galley showed numerous large vehicles working through the night at Anchorsholme’s Lidl supermarket.

“We would like to sincerely apologies to the local residents for any distress caused by the disturbance because this conduct is not what we, or our communities, expect from our contractors.

“We are working closely with the contractor to ensure that this matter is addressed as swiftly as possible.”

Crews tackle early morning fire at Fleetwood flat

Home | Blackpool Gazette

A fire erupted in a first floor flat in Fleetwood at around 1.40am today (Monday, June 21).

 

Four fire crews from Fleetwood , Blackpool and Bispham rushed to the scene in Lord Street.

Firefighters equipped with breathing apparatus quickly brought the flames under control using one hose reel, two fan units and lighting equipment.

No injuries were reported.

Four fire crews from Fleetwood, Blackpool and Bispham rushed to the scene in Lord Street.

Four fire crews from Fleetwood, Blackpool and Bispham rushed to the scene in Lord Street.

An investigation into the cause of the fire has been launched, the fire service said.

A day at Blackpool Pleasure Beach and a verdict on rules, restrictions, queues and more

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

Restrictions are in place around the whole park but queues are still packed with people excited to get on rides

 

Queues for the Big One at Blackpool Pleasure Beach
Queues for the Big One at Blackpool Pleasure Beach (Image: LancsLive)

As the days are now longer and weather is clearer, theme parks are now reopen for all and have visitors have flocking to their favourite parks in their thousands.

Blackpool Pleasure Beach, one of the North West’s claims to fame, attracts thousands of visitors each year, but of course, like anything else, recent times have meant things are now a little different due to Covid-19.

This year will be the park’s 125th birthday and here is what visitors can expect on their next trip.

When booking-either in advance or at the door, e-tickets are now available instead of wristbands to minimise the need of physical contact between the parks staff and visitors and work well as a quick way to scan into the park and onto rides seamlessly throughout the day.

E-tickets do however, rely on smart phones to be fully charged and at a brighter setting so they can be scanned which may leave visitors with very little battery life at the end of the day. Consider a portable charger.

Immediately when entering, visitors will find members of staff wearing masks and doing their best to maintain social distancing.

Stand behind the yellow line
Stand behind the yellow line

As the park is outdoors, masks aren’t always required when walking from ride to ride or when eating, however, selected rides do require visitors to wear masks while on the rides.

This may be confusing at times for visitors who don’t know which rides require masks and which don’t, but staff monitoring the rides are always there on hand to remind people when needed.

Sanitising stations are in abundance at the park with a minimum of two for each ride. Others are dotted around at various points of the Pleasure Beach, near toilets and food areas as well as at the park’s entrance and exit.

There are also many signs displayed around the park reminding visitors of the social distancing rules, along pathways and as guides whilst queuing up.

A hand sanitising station at Blackpool Pleasure Beach
A hand sanitising station at Blackpool Pleasure Beach

One way systems are in place in areas of the park making it more of a task than usual to navigate around the park, but with members of staff dotted along pathways, there is always someone to ask for guidance if visitors find themselves struggling to find rides.

Despite the Pleasure Beach’s efforts to encourage social distancing with clear signs and markers, it’s very difficult for those wanting to maintain a distance to do so because of other visitors around the park.

Theme parks are notoriously known for long queuing times and Blackpool Pleasure Beach is no exception, though it doesn’t verge to the lengths you might see somewhere like Alton Towers on this visit.

"Keep left"
“Keep left”

Headline rollercoasters like The Big One and Iconic, attract visitors from all over the nation so it’s no surprise that queuing times in Blackpool can range from anything between 10 minutes to almost an hour for the more popular rides.

It’s also worth noting that queuing time may be lengthened if there are any technical difficulties resulting in a breakdown and resetting of the ride.

While most queues have now been pushed further outdoors to allow for more air flow, visitors may need to be wary as there is very little social distancing in queues and there is a high chance of being less than a metre apart from fellow park visitors.

Even though visitors are likely to spend more than half the time at the park queuing up than going on rides, all thrill seekers will agree that the wait worth is usually worth it.

The Big One, also known as Pepsi Max, is the park’s biggest and fastest ride as well as the UK’s tallest roller coaster reaching up to 235 ft.

It’s no surprise to see the queues stretch further and further out into the park, but looks can be deceiving as the queue for The Big One moves much faster than visitors may anticipate after a first glance of the length.

Waiting for Icon at Blackpool Pleasure Beach
Waiting for Icon at Blackpool Pleasure Beach

The ride itself is definitely one for the thrill seekers. The excitement and anticipation of the climb up to the 235 ft peak eats away at the passengers, so much so, it’s easy to miss the best view of the park from up there.

No matter how many times visitors of Blackpool Pleasure Beach ride The Big One, the thrill and fun of the ride never gets old.

Icon, the newest ride on the park, is the UK’s first double launch roller coaster with two boosts of speed and as the newest and most modern ride in the park, the queue for Icon is most likely the longest with a waiting of almost an hour.

But the comfort of the headrest along with the design of the ride makes it all the more worth it, not forgetting the thrilling twists and loops along the way.

As the queue extends further down the park, two sanitising stations are available at the end and beginning of the queue for visitors to use before getting on the ride as well as one to use once getting off the ride.

Social distancing in the Icon’s queue still remains a challenge due to it’s popularity enticing visitors to experience the newest ride at the park

Waiting for the Big Dipper at Blackpool Pleasure Beach
Waiting for the Big Dipper at Blackpool Pleasure Beach

The Big Dipper, one of the oldest rides in the park and famous for its rickety dips and bumps has one of the fastest moving queues in the park with a queuing time of about 10 minutes and 15 minutes during busier moments.

The ride is one to try for traditional roller coaster lovers.

Similar to the Big Dipper with the shortest queueing time is Ice Blast- blink and it’s over.

Because the ride itself is quick, queues are also quick to move so issues with social distancing are far less than on other rides in the park.

Like The Big One, Ice Blast has another one of the best views of the park, that is if you can bare to keep your eyes open after that heart dropping lift to the top.

Another quick, shock to the system ride, is Revolution with a 360 spin forwards and backwards, there really is no preparing yourself for the speed and thrill of this ride.

Queues to Revolution follow up a tall tower of steps and the platform where visitors wait for the carriage is more exposed to the open air than other rides allowing for more ventilation of fresh air whilst waiting for their turn.

Social distancing is slightly better within queue as the steps are wide for people to alternate which side the choose to stand on.

The queue for Revolution at Blackpool Pleasure Beach
The queue for Revolution at Blackpool Pleasure Beach

Similar to Icon, is Infusion with a queue time of around 35 to 40 minutes.

Full of head banging twists and turns, screams and cheers can definitely be heard from around the park.

As another outdoor queue in the park, visitors aren’t required to wear masks; however it raises questions as to whether they should be allowed to be so close to one another whilst waiting.

Avalanche, with its unique carriages allows two people per seat and is designed like bob sleds with passengers sitting in the laps of the other passenger in the cart making it an uncomfortable one in the park.

Despite the worry of head butting or crushing the friend or family member behind you, Avalanche continues it’s bobsleigh theme with the ride twisting at high speeds around ‘runs’.

The wait for Infusion at Blackpool Pleasure Beach
The wait for Infusion at Blackpool Pleasure Beach

Visitors may be disappointed to find that the parks popular water ride Valhalla is shut until 2022, although this has been widely reported.

Other than the sanitiser provided at various points in the queue and rides, there is very little evidence of the rides being cleaned in between groups as when one group of passengers exit the ride, the second group jump on immediately after.

A visit to Blackpool Pleasure Beach has always been a fun day out for everyone, regardless of whether or not you enjoy big rides, there are plenty of others to choose from as well as arcades and food places to enjoy too.

Even during difficult times, with guidelines constantly changing, all the measures are put in place to make it a good visit for all but the measures themselves don’t seem to be enough to effectively encourage social distancing.

Tributes to ‘gentle and kind’ biker, 27, killed in Blackpool crash

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

Sam Cardwell lost his life after a collision on Ansdell Road in Blackpool

 

Sam Cardwell who died after a crash in Blackpool
Sam Cardwell who died after a crash in Blackpool (Image: Lancashire Police)

A biker who died in a crash in Blackpool has been described as a “gentle, kind, enthusiastic soul”.

Sam Cardwell was tragically killed in the collision on Ansdell Road yesterday (Saturday, June 19).

The 27-year-old was riding a Benelli TNT motorcycle towards Waterloo Road when it veered off the road while he was negogiating a bend.

The bike then mounted the pavement and collided with a stationary Honda Jazz car, police said.

Sam was taken to Blackpool Victoria Hospital and later transferred to Royal Preston Hospital where he died.

In a tribute, Sam’s family said: “Sam attended Montgomery High School, Bispham, which he left in 2010. He resided in the Blackpool area and will be sorely missed by his family and friends who would describe him as a gentle, kind, enthusiastic soul who was always happy.

“We would like to thank family and friends for their ongoing support and would also like to thank passers by who helped Sam following the collision as well as North West Ambulance Service (NWAS) and staff at both Blackpool Victoria Hospital and Royal Preston Hospital for their care and dignified response throughout the incident.”

Sgt Andrew Hemingway, of West Tactical Operations, said: “This collision has tragically resulted in a Sam losing his life and my thoughts remain with his loved ones at this extremely difficult time.

“We are working to establish exactly what caused the collision and I would ask any witnesses or anybody with CCTV or dashcam footage which could assist our enquiries to get in touch.”

Anybody with information is asked to email 4064@lancashire.police.uk or call 101, quoting log 0218 of June 19, 2021.

Blackpool clean air zone could have major impact on the resort

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

The council should “implement an ultra-low emissions zone in the town centre by 2027, according to a report

 

Blackpool beach in June
Blackpool beach in June

Creating an ultra-low emissions zone in Blackpool town centre could put tourists off visiting the resort, a councillor has warned.

Coun Gary Coleman said it was “a very difficult balancing act” to adopt measures aimed at tackling climate change while competing with other holiday destinations.

He was responding to suggestions made by the Blackpool Climate Assembly that drivers of non-electric cars could be charged for visiting parts of the town centre in future.

Among recommendations made by the assembly, which was held earlier this year, is the council should “implement an ultra-low emissions zone in the town centre by 2027, charging vehicles that are not electric for access.”

Coun Coleman told a meeting of the tourism, economy and communities scrutiny committee: “It’s a very difficult balancing act that we need.

“We don’t want to put people off by them thinking Blackpool’s got this charge now so I’m not going to go to Blackpool, I’m going to go to Morecambe or Skegness or wherever it might be.

“On the whole this is an excellent report, it’s just this side of things that concerns me a little.”

Scott Butterfield, strategy policy and research manager at the council, said assembly members had been asked to make recommendations which were challenging, but some ideas needed ‘a lot of consideration’.

He said while an ultra-low emissions zone would work in some places, in Blackpool the knock-on effects needed to be investigated.

He added: “As we’re at the start of the process we’re starting to unpick the box and come to a reasonable view.

“Is that the right thing to do with the resources we’ve got, given the impact and the knock-on effect it will have?

“Or is there a different way we can make a big statement about this issue without necessarily going down that particular route.

“It will be thought about very carefully and that’s where we need to look at the implications.”

The committee agreed to note the recommendations of the assembly which saw around 40 residents taking part in a series of discussions during January and February.

The council declared a Climate Emergency in July 2019, committing it to work towards carbon neutrality across its services and companies by 2030, and across the town in a similar timescale.

Motorcyclist dies in early morning Blackpool crash

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

Police are appealing for witnesses and dashcam footage of the incident

 

File photo of a police car attending an incident
File photo of a police car attending an incident

Police are appealing for witnesses and dashcam footage after a motorcyclist died following a crash in Blackpool this morning (June 19).

Lancashire Constabulary officers were called to Ansdell Road at 2.05am following reports a Benelli TNT travelling towards Waterloo Road had come off the carriageway while negotiating a bend, mounted the pavement and collided with a stationary Honda Jazz.

The rider of the Benelli, a 26-year-old man from Blackpool, was taken to Blackpool Victoria Hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Sgt Andrew Hemingway, of West Tactical Operations, said: “This collision has tragically resulted in a man losing his life and my thoughts are with his loved ones at this extremely difficult time.

“We are now working to establish exactly what caused the collision and I would ask any witnesses or anybody with CCTV or dashcam footage which could assist our enquiries to get in touch.”

His family have been informed and are being supported by specially-trained officers.

Anybody with information is asked to email 4064@lancashire.police.uk or call 101, quoting log 0218 of June 19, 2021