Blackpool courier driver struggles to get fuel leaving her worried for her job

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Heavily reliant on her income from her courier delivery job, Anne Oliver is now concerned about how she’ll make ends meet


Anne Oliver works as courier driver and has struggled to get diesel for her car which she needs for work
Anne Oliver works as courier driver and has struggled to get diesel for her car which she needs for work

A self-employed courier driver from Blackpool has shared her concerns after struggling to get fuel for her car, leaving her in limbo as to whether she will have an income to pay the bills.

Anne Oliver, 49, relies on the money she makes as a courier driver, but with petrol stations closing off pumps, she’s been unable to fill up.

Being self-employed means Anne is only paid for the number of parcels she delivers during her rounds which she does with her small diesel car.


Without the fuel to see her through delivery rounds, Anne could be left with no money for the day which she says is now a very real possibility for her and one that is weighing on her mind daily.

“I wasn’t too bad over the weekend but yesterday, I was down in the red. I didn’t know if I would get around my rounds but I managed it,” Anne said.

“Today I had to keep an eye out on Facebook to see where has diesel and this morning I ended up queuing for ten minutes – I’ve got it now thankfully but if I don’t have the fuel in my car I can’t go to work.”

Like many drivers who are in desperate need of fuel in their cars, Anne finds herself in frustrating situations where she has to question whether she should get in line to fill up her car.

Despite having filled up half her tank, Anne says she’s worried if the situation doesn’t settle in time for her next fill, she could be in danger of not being able to go to work.

All pumps out of use at a petrol station amid fuel crisis
All pumps out of use at a petrol station amid fuel crisis (Image: James Maloney/LancsLive)

“It’s a big worry,” she said.

“I’ve got half a tank and that will do me until next week but then it’s next week where you’re thinking what if we’re in the same predicament?

“You shouldn’t have to be worrying like that- if I had a car and I wasn’t going anywhere I wouldn’t even bother going to the fuel station and I’d think leave it, let those that need it get it.”

Knowing she’ll be able to work this week has been a relief for Anne but despite that, she still says she’s on edge as her fuel gauge gradually declines each time she gets in and out of her car.

She said: “You’re turning your car off and on, it takes fuel to start it and you’re just worrying all the time now.”

As well as becoming anxious about what the next few days will bring, Anne is now restricting her driving as she’s not confident with taking on anymore extra rounds in fear of running out of fuel too soon.

Tempers flare as motorists queue for fuel amid panic buying
Motorists queue at a Shell garage on the A3218 in west London. The president of the AA says panic-buying rather than supply chain issues is driving the shortage of fuel at some petrol stations.
She said: “I could possibly pick up an extra round from my depot but I can’t do anything like that because I’ve got to think, I need my fuel for my own round.

“I need to make sure my money is coming in from that one at least.

“I just wish people would wake up and think ‘my car’s out of fuel for a while, I’m not going anywhere it’ll be fine’.

“It’s not just delivery drivers, its ambulances, buses and other drivers that are needed to get into work- just think About what you’re doing.”

Many fuel station across the county have experienced outages in their stock levels after a spike in customers panic-buying fuel.

Since Friday (September 24) station managers saw extensive queues, arguing and large quantities of fuel taken up after it was reported that BP had to close a handful of forecourts late last week due to not having any fuel.

Now, the county remains in a worrying situation as drivers scramble for much needed fuel to get them through the week.



Hull City 1-1 Blackpool: Seasiders waste golden chance to make it three wins after being pegged back late on by 10-men Tigers

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Blackpool wasted the chance to make it three wins on the spin as they were pegged back by 10-man Hull City late on.


The Seasiders looked to be heading to their fourth win in five games thanks to Shayne Lavery’s superfly-taken first-time strike.

But the game flipped on its head 10 minutes from time when the struggling Tigers were reduced to 10 men in the 80th minute.

The Seasiders looked to be heading to a third straight victory thanks to Shayne Lavery's first-half strike

The Seasiders looked to be heading to a third straight victory thanks to Shayne Lavery’s first-half strike

But the dismissal seemed to spur the home side into life and Tom Eaves came off the bench to level matters four minutes from time.

Neil Critchley’s side still had chances to retake the lead in the dying minutes, but they were unable to make the most of their chances.

While a draw away at Hull is not to be sniffed at, it feels more like a defeat given the nature of how Hull equalised.

Nevertheless, Pool are still looking in healthy shape having lost just one of their last five games.

There was a surprise inclusion in the Blackpool side in the form of Gary Madine, who was handed his first start in eight months.

The striker has previously made three substitute appearances so far this season following his recovery from a niggling groin injury.

Tyreece John-Jules was the man to make way, while Demetri Mitchell came in for Josh Bowler.

It was also a first start of the season for the winger, who had been sidelined for eight weeks with a knee injury sustained in pre-season.

There was still no spot in the 18 for Jordan Gabriel, who returned to training on Sunday after being forced to self-isolate after his girlfriend tested positive for Covid-19.

But Kevin Stewart returned from a foot injury to be included among Blackpool’s substitutes.

Reece James (foot), Matty Virtue (ACL), Grant Ward (achilles), Kevin Stewart (foot), Owen Dale (foot) and CJ Hamilton (foot) all remain sidelined.

Teddy Howe, Oliver Sarkic, Bez Lubala and Joe Nuttall, meanwhile, continue to be left out having not been registered in Blackpool’s squad.

Hull, meanwhile, made three changes from their 2-0 defeat to Stoke City at the weekend.

Grant McCann’s side, who joined the Seasiders in winning promotion from League One last season, started the day inside the bottom three, having failed to win since the opening day of the season.

Unsurprisingly then, Hull looked short on confidence in the early exchanges, as Blackpool did most of the early running.

With Demetri Mitchell and Shayne Lavery dropping in-between the lines, the Seasiders looked a threat when they got into Hull’s final third.

But it was the hosts who produced the first shot in anger of the night, Greg Docherty whistling one harmlessly wide from long range.

Pool’s first chance of the game came via their main dangerman Lavery, who fired across the face of goal after latching onto Madine’s clever flick-on.

The Seasiders were still looking the more threatening side though, working the ball into some dangerous positions on a fairly regular basis.

The atmosphere among the home crowd finally stirred midway through the opening half as Mitchell and Keshi Anderson produced a couple of meaty challenges.

Critchley’s men were given a major let-off on 27 minutes when Chris Maxwell produced a weak pass out from the back straight to Ryan Longman.

The forward pulled the ball back to Mallik Wilks in front of goal, but the Hull man delayed and delayed before the chance eventually went to waste.

Wilks looked to atone for his wastefulness a moment later when he met a ball in from the left inside the six-yard box, but Maxwell was equal to his downward header.

In either case, the referee blew for a foul after Wilks was adjudged to have shoved Richard Keogh to the ground prior to meeting the cross.

Pool, who had just slipped off their game for a 10-minute period or so, hit back with a chance for Mitchell, whose curling effort from the right was palmed away from danger by Matt Ingram.

The Seasiders began to become a little sloppy at this moment, which allowed Grant McCann’s men to get on top. But neither side were creating a great deal and there wasn’t much quality on either.

Four minutes before the interval, Dujon Sterling was required to make a vital interception after Wilks had sprung the offside trap.

Just as it looked like Hull were getting on top, Blackpool took the lead with a goal of real quality.

Ryan Wintle laid the ball off to Mitchell, who had switched flanks to come over to the left.

The winger played a lovely ball into the centre where Lavery lashed the ball high into the roof of the net for his seventh goal of the season.

The Tigers were clearly given a rocket during the break by McCann as they emerged three or four minutes early for the start of the second-half.

They caused Pool’s backline one or two problems early on too, Longman firing into the side-netting after the Seasiders could only partially clear a free-kick.

Richard Keogh then made a vital block to deny Keane Lewis-Potter as the home side continued to pile on some pressure.

The Seasiders responded well though as Lavery came to life once again, the Northern Irishman firing over after being played in by Keshi Anderson.

Critchley freshened things up on the hour mark, introducing Josh Bowler in place of Mitchell, who got a useful 60 minutes under his belt on his first start of the season.

Bowler almost made an instant impact against his former club, breaking forward at speed before seeing his shot well blocked.

Jerry Yates was the next man to be introduced from the bench, replacing Madine who was given a healthy ovation as he trudged off the pitch by the travelling Pool fans.

As Hull threw caution to the wind in the final 15 minutes and threw more men forward, space began to open up for Pool on the counter.

On one occasion, Anderson was allowed to race towards the edge of the box where he wastefully lashed wide of the upright.

Hull’s task became even harder when they were reduced to 10 men 10 minutes from time, former Fleetwood man Lewie Coyle shown a second yellow for a pull back on Lavery.

Despite being a man down, Hull drew themselves level four minutes later.

The hosts were inexplicably allowed to counter at speed, as Lewis-Potter picked out substitute Tom Eaves who fired home past Maxwell.

It could have got even worse for the Seasiders, who almost went behind to the 10 men as Maxwell turned Tyler Smith’s curling effort around the post.

Pool still had chances to win the game late on, Bowler going close on two occasions with two similar opportunities.

The winger, cutting in from the right, fired a goalbound effort into teammate Yates before lashing just wide in the five minutes of stoppage time.

Luke Garbutt had the final chance of the night, arrowing a right-footed effort towards the near post, but Ingram got across well to palm the ball away.


Hull: Ingram, Coyle, Jones, Elder, Greaves, Cannon (Eaves), Docherty, Moncur, Wilks, Lewis-Potter, Longman (T. Smith)

Subs not used: Baxter, Smallwood, Emmanuel, M. Smith, Bernard

Blackpool: Maxwell, Sterling, Keogh, Ekpiteta, Garbutt, Dougall, Wintle, Mitchell (Bowler), Anderson, Lavery (John-Jules), Madine (Yates)

Subs not used: Moore, Connolly, Husband, Stewart

Referee: Matthew Donohue

Attendance: 10,189



Blackpool apprentices earn top marks and a James Bond film premier

Home | Blackpool Gazette

A Blackpool duo are celebrating after passing their apprenticeship with Aptus Utilities and achieving some of the highest marks in the UK.


Connah Trevelyan and Ethan Goulding, both 18, secured distinctions and are heading to London for a VIP trip to the premier of the new James Bond movie No Time to Die as a reward.

Both have been offered a permanent contract with Aptus, which installs the critical infrastructure that provides water, gas and electricity to new build residential and commercial developments.

The award-winning two-year apprenticeship scheme was devised by Bolton headquartered Aptus in 2015 to help tackle a severe skills shortage in the construction industry.

Ethan Goulding and Connah Trevelyan

Ethan Goulding and Connah Trevelyan

Combining on the job training and classroom learning, delivered by further education college Utility and Construction Training (UCT), it leads to nationally recognised qualifications.

Steve Hyde, business development director at UCT, said: “The attitude and commitment of the learners has been excellent throughout the programme and, together with the proactive support from the Aptus management team, has resulted in this successful outcome.”

In recognition of their results, the newly qualified apprentices are being treated to a Bond-themed all expenses trip to London, where they’ll travel down the Thames in a speedboat before walking the red carpet to take their seats at the premier of the latest Bond film, No Time To Die.

Connah said: “All the hard work I’ve put in has paid off. Learning and getting paid as you go is great. I’ve really enjoyed learning new things, not just about work but life as well. It’s hard at the start but really worth sticking with.”

Ethan said: “I’m so proud to have got a distinction. I’ve really enjoyed the course and making new mates. I’ve enjoyed the practical bits and being on site with the Aptus team most.”

Aptus managing director Lisa Kerford said: “Our sector is facing a severe skills shortage so we decided to address this head-on by creating our very own apprenticeship scheme. Basically, we’re growing our own talent.

“We are big believers in apprenticeships and so far, have had over 40 young people train and qualify across a range of courses. They have gone on to enjoy careers as project managers, estimators, health and safety advisers, design engineers, electric jointers, gas engineers, warehouse operatives and business administrators.”



Volunteers return to Blackpool Victoria Hospital after pandemic restrictions

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Volunteers at Blackpool Victoria Hospital have returned to their duties after they were stood down at the start of the pandemic.


Apart from a short period in June, volunteers have been unable to help with the running of the hospital since March last year.

Dotty Wignall and Susan Lawler, volunteers on hand in the main entrance guiding and advising visitors. said it was “good to get back to normality.”

The pair have worked together for six years, and were delighted to be reunited.

Dotty Wignall and Susan Lawler have volunteered together for six years. Pic: Blackpool Teaching Hospitals

Dotty Wignall and Susan Lawler have volunteered together for six years. Pic: Blackpool Teaching Hospitals

Dotty said: “It is good to get back to normality. I love meeting people and being able to help people.

“Quite often visitors are stressed or anxious about friends and family on wards, people who are very poorly. This hospital can be a bit daunting, so we try and put their mind at rest.”

Susan, who previously ran her own newsagents and gift shop, is getting accustomed to the new responsibilities of her role, including ensuring everyone sticks to the infection prevention guidelines.

She said: “The majority of people have been absolutely brilliant about wearing the masks, sanitising their hands, but we do get the odd one or two who think they don’t have to abide by the rules. For everyone like that there are hundreds who say ‘fine, no problem.’”

Betty the therapy dog with her owner Graham Curry. Pic: Blackpool Teaching Hospitals

Betty the therapy dog with her owner Graham Curry. Pic: Blackpool Teaching Hospitals

One of the Trust’s most popular volunteers is canine companion Betty, who offers pet therapy to patients and staff at the Vic.

Accompanied by her owner, Graham Curry, Betty is back in action offering companionship and cheering up many who might feel lonely on the wards.

Graham said: “I visited one particular patient who was suffering from dementia. She was in a side ward and just lying in bed and hardly speaking but as soon as she saw Betty, she reached out and started speaking, it was amazing to see the effect she had on this patient.

“Another lady said before I had come in she was feeling depressed but the visit of Betty had really improved her feelings.

“Betty was so welcomed on the wards. Many of the staff have been getting cuddles and taking selfies.”

Blackpool Teaching Hospital’s new chief executive, Trish Armstrong-Child, thanked the Trust’s large group of volunteers, who returned to their duties over the last few days.

She said: “It is fantastic that on my first day at the Trust we welcomed back our hugely important cohort of volunteers..

“I know from my early conversations that the volunteers at Blackpool Teaching Hospitals are well-loved and well-liked within the Trust.

“Very often our volunteers are the very first faces one of our patients will see as they are welcomed through our front doors, and it is always comforting to have a friendly face, one with a wealth of knowledge about the hospital.

“It’s great to have them back after being out of action due to the pandemic, their presence has provided a huge lift to the organisation and I look forward to thanking as many of the volunteers as I can when I am out-and-about visiting our various wards and departments.”



‘High risk’ rapist captured and back behind bars after going on the run in Lancashire

Home | Blackpool Gazette

A convicted rapist who went on the run in Lancashire is back behind bars after being captured.


Kevin Anthony Wyatt, 37, has been returned to prison after being arrested in the Greater Manchester area today (Friday, September 24).

Also known as David Edge, the ‘high risk’ rapist was handed a 10 year prison sentence at Preston Crown Court in April 2016 after he was found guilty of two counts of rape against a woman at a home in Barrow in November 2015.

But Wyatt – who has links to Blackpool – was released on licence after serving less than half his sentence and disappeared from approved lodgings in Accrington earlier this month.

Kevin Anthony Wyatt, 37, has been returned to prison after being arrested in the Greater Manchester area today (Friday, September 24). Pic: Lancashire Police

Kevin Anthony Wyatt, 37, has been returned to prison after being arrested in the Greater Manchester area today (Friday, September 24). Pic: Lancashire Police

On Wednesday (September 22), Lancashire Police alerted the public and said they were “very concerned” by his disappearance.

Det Con Kyle Hazelaar, of Lancashire Police, said: “Wyatt is wanted on prison recall after failing to return to approved premises and we are very concerned following his disappearance.

“He is considered a high risk offender and he should not be approached.”

But today (Friday, September 24), the force said Wyatt has been captured and returned to prison to serve the remainder of his 10-year sentence behind bars.

A police spokesman added: “Further to our earlier appeal, wanted sex offender Kevin Wyatt was arrested in the Greater Manchester area earlier today (Friday, September 24).

“Thanks to everyone who shared our appeals to find him.”

“If you have any information about his whereabouts please come forward.”



Blackpool honeymoon left couple ‘heartbroken’ with hotel making them ‘sick to their stomachs’

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
The Oyo Alumhurst Hotel

A Blackpool hotel has come under fire after two newly-weds claim that they were left ‘heartbroken’ on their honeymoon due to the state of their accommodation.

Sonya Cunningham booked into the Alumhurst Hotel on Charnley Road in Blackpool for a week to celebrate her honeymoon with her husband.

She said that they had booked ‘a lovely apartment’ but as they were travelling over, she ‘spotted’ on TripAdvisor that the hotel had ‘bad reviews’.

Sonya claims that on arrival she was left ‘sick to her stomach’ and that her experience only deteroriated on entering the room.

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

Sonya said: “I felt sick to my stomach the fact we had booked this place. I told my new husband this and decided to park the car up, walk to the hotel without baggage to see what it was like.”

Sonya said that the Alumhurst hotel was ‘filthy’ and ‘smelt awful’.

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

After getting the key to their room and going up stairs, 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.’

The pair said they ‘demanded a refund’ but instead were offered free cancellation.

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

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.

Another guest, Elaine Williams-Jones went to stay at 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.

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

Elaine says she was also offered a room change and moved to Room 32.

“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.”

Elaine also said there was the ‘smell of cigarettes’ in the room. .

Other visitors that have left reviews on TripAdvisor have shared their experience of the OYO accommodation.

One guest, who left a review on September 23, wrote: “Will not be returning. Cracked window on the main door, smelly corridors, grubby carpets, no hot water in sink, only one tap works, shower poor, the heating control comes away.

“Photos on the booking app were nothing like it is. Would score minus points if possible. Bed was the only thing decent about it.

Another guest who visited in August 2021 wrote: “Total nightmare of a place. We were two couples who ended up in five rooms as keys broke in locks, keys weren’t available, rooms hadn’t been cleaned, shower wasn’t working etc. Dirty towels and bedding stacked up in hallways until after 5pm.

“So noisy at night as you could hear everyone around you. Beds cheap and uncomfortable and only one wafer thin pillow each. Wasn’t expecting anything posh for the price but my god, we couldn’t wait to get out of here.”

Claims about the standards of Blackpool hotels have been at the centre of the passing staycation period this summer, with a rise in ‘hotel from hell’ accounts coming specifically from the resort.

Despite this, a couple of recent guests have given the hotel an ‘average’ rating.

One, who stayed in September, said: “Looked for somewhere cheap and cheerful and found this hotel for one night after reading the reviews is afraid very afraid but did not need to be from the outside it looks awful and the corridors are old but the room for the price was clean tidy the bed was comfortable and also clean the bathroom is old but was clean.

“Would I stay again yes sure don’t be put off give it a go if you want cheap accommodation”.

The Director of Stay Blackpool, Ian White, accused of ‘polishing turds’ after a 5* B&B owner said the resort is becoming a ‘dumping ground’ for the rest of the UK.

Blackpool Council have encouraged accommodation businesses to ‘aspire’ to nationally-recognised accreditation standards amid the ongoing accounts.

There is an opt-in accreditation scheme available to hoteliers provided by VisitBlackpool. Memberships into the scheme, accredited by VisitEngland, cost £49.95 for 1-20 bedrooms and up to £125 for 150+ bedrooms.

Those who opt-in to the scheme are then accredited through the national star-rating scheme or through the Blackpool Approved Visitor Accommodation Scheme.

When OYO Alumhurst was contacted, LancsLive was told twice that the hotel rooms were ‘clean and tidy’.

No additional comment was provided.





Fylde’s united effort to reduce litter a super success

Home | Blackpool Gazette

A campaign to help reduce litter across Fylde during an exceptionally busy summer has been hailed a resounding success.


Fylde Council says its Take It, Don’t Leave It incentive has led to a significant reduction in litter and has encouraged even more volunteers to support clean-up operations on beaches and in rural communities.

The campaign was launched in July in partnership with local volunteers to raise awareness among visitors and holidaymakers as well as local residents and businesses.

It featured a series of competitions, sand art installations and videos to highlight the types of litter left behind, the dangers of disposable barbecues and the devastating effects of rubbish on marine wildlife.

Scores of volunteers have played a key part in the campaign's success

Scores of volunteers have played a key part in the campaign’s success

The council also invested in additional staff, bins and collections and introduced bucket and spade trade recycling facilities on the beach, while Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service and local volunteers made heartfelt pleas to people to think twice before lighting barbecues or littering.

A competition with prizes to reward young litter pickers was also launched, and a thank you event for volunteers was organised.

Coun Roger Small, Fylde Council’s deputy leader and chairman of its operational management committee, said: “We are absolutely delighted with the results of the Take It, Don’t Leave It initiative which has gone a long way to making people think twice before leaving their litter behind.

“The incredible work carried out by our amazing volunteers, along with our teams from the council, has meant that Fylde has been clean and tidy throughout the summer.

“We wanted to support all our local volunteers with a campaign that would amplify the fantastic work they do all year round and we have had a lot of positive feedback from residents, businesses and visitors.

“The last two years have been the most challenging any of us can remember, with staycations meaning huge numbers have descended on our area.

“The seven days a week sessions carried out by staff, in addition to their normal duties, have been superb but we are hugely grateful to the army of volunteers for their unstinting efforts. We could not have done without them, so from all of us to all of them, a sincere thank you.”

Coastal conservationist and marine medic Tracey Hope is the lead coordinator for the volunteers and has been supporting the campaign throughout summer.

She said: “During the May half term holiday this year we were inundated with visitors and we saw more litter than ever before, which was heartbreaking to see.

“With more people holidaying in the UK this year we were expecting the same during the summer but we think the campaign has made a real difference to the amount of rubbish left behind.

“We saw a significant reduction in litter and a really promising increase in the number of people stepping forward to volunteer – including lots of young people and children – which is fantastic.

“I think that highlighting the plight of marine wildlife really helped and we had lots of people telling us that they didn’t know that we had porpoises, dolphins and seals in our waters.

“There was an increase in visibility in volunteers and council staff and the additional bins and collections played a vital part too.

“On behalf of all the volunteers, I would like to thank Fylde Council for their unwavering support in our fight against litter – this is ‘partnership working’ at its best.

“The work doesn’t stop there though and we will continue to be out and about keeping our multi-award-winning beach, and the surrounding areas, clean and tidy every day.”

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Lancashire chamber of commerce welcomes print specialist as a partner

Home | Blackpool Gazette

Lancashire’s largest business support organisation, the NWL Chamber of Commerce, has welcomed a Blackpool print, design, marketing and workwear company as its newest Patron Member.


Mina Print, based at The Pavilions in Avroe Crescent, but servicing clients across the UK, the firm has committed to working with the Chamber to offer fellow members their expertise and efficiency.

The chamber said the organisation had quickly grown to become one of the most respected in its field, through first-class customer service, and unrivaled product range.

Managing director, Jake Adams, said of the partnership: “I am delighted that we have joined NWL Chamber of Commerce’s Patron family.

Jake Adams of Mina Print

Jake Adams of Mina Print

“This is a huge achievement for our business as we look to expand throughout the region. Being able to tap into the resources of the Chamber, and establish relationships with the wealth of businesses throughout the membership, will help bolster our expansion plans.

“I would like to thank Babs Murphy and the NWL Chamber of Commerce for their support and guidance since our business first joined in 2016.”

The Chamber’s patron membership offers a select number of quality organisations a platform to promote their commitment to the region’s business community through offering outstanding services and customer care.

Patron membership is the most strategic and influential partnership the chamber offers and is limited to just a handful of selected organisations, in non-competing sectors.

Babs Murphy, chief executive of the North and Western Lancashire Chamber of Commerce said: “Mina Print is a well-respected business and active member of the chamber. We are delighted that Jake has chosen to become a patron member.

“Jake was the first ever winner of the BIBAs Most Inspiring Young Person’ award in 2016; it’s been a pleasure to see his business grow and develop in recent years”.

The Chamber represents its 1,600 members, from its offices based in Preston and Blackpool, on a wide range of issues.



Policing in Bispham ‘needs a good overhaul,’ says Blackpool councillor

Home | Blackpool Gazette

A Blackpool councillor has voiced his concerns about ‘basic policing’ in his Bispham ward, amid fears reports about speeding and other crime in the area were not being tackled.


Tory councillor Don Clapham said he doubted any of Bispham’s residents knew who their local police officers were, and despite completing various police surveys himself, nothing ever came from them.

Coun Clapham’s concerns about speeding around Bispham village came as the daughter of a hit-and-run victim lobbied Blackpool Council for stricter safety measures last week.

Vincent O’Toole, 93, was reversed into by a speeding car near Warbreck Drive and was hospitalised with an arm injury, prompting his daughter Michelle Beech of Hesketh Avenue to petition for traffic calming measures.

Councillor Don Clapham was concerned that policing of Bispham streets was "eroded", and called for an overhaul of the current system.

Councillor Don Clapham was concerned that policing of Bispham streets was “eroded”, and called for an overhaul of the current system.

Coun Clapham said he had complained to Blackpool Police about speeding on behalf of residents numerous times, but they had not been “proactive” in addressing issues.

He said: “Speeding has become a major issue on all our roads since the lockdown for Covid. Complaints and requests to the police have produced no proactive moves by them.

“I have filled in a number of police surveys and they produced no results. On discussing this topic with the rest of the Conservative Group, speeding is a major issue in Blackpool.

“We hope to have a group meeting with the Police Commissioner soon and this will be a topic on our agenda. A proactive police force would be a touch of fresh air.”

However, Coun Clapham commended officers for their work in tackling drugs issues, but called for an “overhaul” of policing on the streets.

The front desk at Bispham Police Station was closed in 2018, which the councillor said had impacted on residents’ abilities to share concerns with officers.

“They are good at hitting drug movements and county lines crimes including sex exploitation and modern slavery,” Coun Clapham continued.

“But the basic policing which residents expect appear to be eroded. We have a police station in Bispham without a desk or access to the public.

“Councillors used to be supplied with monthly crime figures and Police successes in the days of PACT, but I doubt if the general public know their local beat manager – if they still exist.

“It is an unhealthy situation which needs a good overhaul.”

Temp Insp Jon Smith, of Blackpool Police, said: “Blackpool Police are aware road safety is a concern for local residents across all of Blackpool. We deploy specialist officers dependant on where residents report issues or to areas where there have been serious or fatal road traffic collisions.

“We have conducted a number of road safety operations with neighbourhood officers and the Lancashire Road Safety Partnership in the Bispham area. We have found the vast majority of road users use the road legally and the minority of users found not doing so were dealt with.

“Bispham Police Station is an operational police station with various officers using the facilities at all hours. Any members of the public who attend the station will be seen by an officer when available. Alternatively, there is a yellow phone outside that goes straight to the communications room if they’re not available.

“The front counter is currently closed, this decision was made after review of all operational front counters, with Bispham’s showing low footfall.

“There is a dedicated neighbourhood police team consisting of both police officers and PCSOs which service all of Blackpool North, including the Bispham area. This is in addition to the 24-hour response officers dealing with 999 calls and request of service from members of the public.

“Crime data for the local area is published online and can be accessed by any member of the public including our local councillors

“I would encourage any members of the public who have concerns of activities in the local area to either report these online at, to ring 999 in an emergency or to sign up to Lancashire Talking where they can report local problems. The local neighbourhood police team can also be contacted via”



Comedian Roy Chubby Brown has been slammed after he stormed off stage and refused to come back on – when he was heckled

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Comedian Roy Chubby Brown has been slammed after he stormed off stage and refused to come back on – when he was heckled.


Comedian Roy Chubby Brown

Comedian Roy Chubby Brown

The controversial funnyman, 74, had only been on stage for 30 minutes before fans claim he told the crowd “F*** off and you can have your money back” and stormed off.

Bemused fans were left looking at the empty stage for a couple of minutes before theatre staff announced he would not be finishing the planned two-hour show.

Fans were then ushered out of the 300-seat Carnegie Theatre & Arts Centre Workington, Cumbria, early, at around 9pm last night (Thurs).

One claims the shouters were good-natured and not disruptive – but theatre staff said some had to be thrown out and “were not your normal hecklers”.

Fans have slammed Chubby Brown for his “disgusting” regard for his fans.

Susan Brown, 59, who had bought a £23 ticket for the show said: “We all thought it was part of the act.

“Everybody in there was completely gobsmacked.

“When it was announced on the Tannoy everybody was just looking around at each other.

“It took a few minutes for the penny to drop before people started getting up.

“We were just in shock it wasn’t as if he was getting abuse.

“The lads behind us, they must have been in their 20s, were shouting ‘Oh come on Chubby’ and ‘Chubby’.

“But this was when everyone else was laughing. It wasn’t interrupting the show.

“We were on the balcony and another bloke down below was shouting encouragement too.

“It wasn’t disrespectful or abusive.

“They must have only done it about a dozen times.”

The grandmother-of-two added: “He’s from the North and from a rough place. I thought he had more about him.

“On the drive home I was just absolutely gutted.

“I just really am shocked.

“There should have been a warning about calling out if he was going to act like that.

“It was all in good spirits.

“But that’s me finished with him.

“I’ve been a fan for years and years.

“It’s just disgusting what he’s done.

“My late son and husband were really big fans.

“I was feeling under the weather but I pulled myself together and was looking for a good night.

“I was absolutely gutted it ended on that note.”

Manager of Carnegie Theatre & Arts Centre Karen Thompson said anyone who wants a refund should return to the venue with their ticket.

She said: “Roy has performed several shows over the years with no incidents.

“These were not your normal hecklers.

“The show was disrupted continuously and persistently by hecklers.

“After being told to stop by a member of staff some had to be ejected from the venue.

“The issue continued and it ended with Roy being unable to deliver his lines and ruining what was going to be a superb night.

“I would like to praise Roy and his management for the professionalism in handling the hecklers.

“Any customer wanting a refund will need to return to the theatre with their ticket.”

A representative for Roy Chubby Brown has been contacted for comment.