Category Archives: Blackpool Businesses

Opening date confirmed for new B&M in Bispham

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Bispham’s new B&M store has confirmed it will open to shoppers in just two weeks’ time.

 

The discount retailer will officially open its new store in Holyoke Avenue on Tuesday, October 26.

The opening comes just a month after the new Aldi supermarket next door welcomed its first customers on September 23.

The two stores have divided the 20,000sq ft retail unit formerly occupied by Poundstretcher, which closed in February.

B&M will officially open its new store next to Aldi in Holyoke Avenue on Tuesday, October 26. Pic: James Howarth

B&M will officially open its new store next to Aldi in Holyoke Avenue on Tuesday, October 26. Pic: James Howarth

A B&M spokesman said: “We look forward to welcoming customers to our new B&M in Bispham, Blackpool, where shoppers can complete their weekly shop for the best possible price.

“You can pick up your favourite brands in our selections of food, drink, wine, beer, baby food, pet food and much more besides, without breaking the bank.

“We also stock superb health and beauty products, toys, games, DIY products, homeware, electricals, gifts and seasonal products, so you can fulfil all of your household and lifestyle needs under one roof.

“We’re located very close to Layton Station – just a five minute walk up Bispham Road.

B&M and Aldi have moved into the retail unit formerly occupied by Poundstretcher in Holyoke Avenue, which closed in February 2021. Pic: James Howarth

B&M and Aldi have moved into the retail unit formerly occupied by Poundstretcher in Holyoke Avenue, which closed in February 2021. Pic: James Howarth

“If you’re travelling by car, simply head east along Warbreck Hill Road, then go straight on over the crossroads with Bispham Road and Plymouth Road to follow Holyoake Avenue. You’ll see our turn-off immediately on your right.

“There’s plenty of parking on-site, or you can catch the number 9 bus from Buchanan Street towards Cleveleys, alighting at Holyoake Avenue after about 9 minutes.

“There are also regular trains to the nearby Layton station from various locations, including Blackpool North and Poulton-le-Fylde.”

The Bispham branch will be the fourth B&M to open in Blackpool, with other stores located in Church Street, Whitegate Drive and Vicarage Lane.

 

 

Blackpool loans company secures £225m finance for expansion

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Blackpool-based consumer loans firm, Oplo, has completed its first securitisation as the business targets continued growth supporting the UK’s ‘new mainstream’ lending market.

 

The £225m securitisation follows a series of investor roadshows in September.

Alex Mollart, Oplo founder and chief executive, said: “Oplo is on a mission to become the UK’s largest lender to the UK’s growing ‘new mainstream’ market of consumers looking for a fair way to borrow and flexible and affordable credit.

“Our first ever securitisation will play a key part in driving our ambitious growth plans over the next few years as we look to support even more hard-working consumers with new products and services.”

The Oplo offices in Blackpool near the airport

The Oplo offices in Blackpool near the airport

Oplo said it has built a strong and growing consumer lending business, becoming one of the UK’s leading specialist consumer lenders offering personal, home and car finance loans to borrowers in the growing ‘new mainstream’ market.

Since its launch in 2009, the Blackpool firm has lent over £800m, with over £400m of assets currently under management.

This first securitisation will underpin and accelerate Oplo’s ambitious growth plans as the firm aims to become the largest consumer lender of its type in the UK, leading the way in providing flexible and fair finance for the ‘new mainstream’ market.

Recent analysis by Oplo has identified up to 26 million customers from traditional prime and near prime segments in the ‘new mainstream’ consumer lending market, including up to seven million conventionally prime customers unable to access mainstream finance from traditional lenders or choosing to use new digital lenders and alongside the UK’s growing ‘near-prime’ market which Oplo estimates now covers up to 19m consumers.

 

 

Fleetwood KFC is giving away free furniture on Facebook

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Online shoppers browsing for bargains on Facebook Marketplace were surprised to find Fleetwood’s KFC giving its tables and chairs away for free.

 

The KFC in Lord Street, Fleetwood is about to undergo a refit and has been giving away its old tables and chairs for for free on Facebook Marketplace. Pic: Google

The KFC in Lord Street, Fleetwood is about to undergo a refit and has been giving away its old tables and chairs for for free on Facebook Marketplace. Pic: Google

The KFC branch in Lord Street is to undergo a refit in the weeks to come and has begun making space for new furniture by offloading its old tables, chairs and stools on Facebook.

Multiple listings for the restaurant’s familiar red stools and wooden tables appeared on Marketplace yesterday (Thursday, October 14), with the fast-food furniture being given away for free.

The tables and chairs inside the Fleetwood branch have been largely unused during the coronavirus pandemic, with the indoor seating area closed for the past 18 months.

The KFC restaurant in Fleetwood is giving its tables and chairs away for free on Facebook Marketplace as the branch prepares to undergo a refit

The KFC restaurant in Fleetwood is giving its tables and chairs away for free on Facebook Marketplace as the branch prepares to undergo a refit

KFC said work on its its Fleetwood branch is about to begin and there are no plans to close the restaurant whilst the refit is carried out.

A KFC spokesman said: “Fear not Fleetwood…we’re not going anywhere! We’re busy giving your KFC restaurant a little TLC and a well-deserved makeover.

“For those looking to get their fried chicken fix, we’re still open for delivery and takeaway.”

The KFC restaurant in Fleetwood is giving its tables and chairs away for free on Facebook Marketplace as the branch prepares to undergo a refit

The KFC restaurant in Fleetwood is giving its tables and chairs away for free on Facebook Marketplace as the branch prepares to undergo a refit

Cleveleys O’Hara Hair Salon is double award-winner at British Hair and Beauty Awards 2021

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A hairdresser from Fleetwood who opened her Cleveleys salon during the first lockdown of the pandemic has won two awards at the British Hair and Beauty Awards.

 

Natalie Dean-Wenlock, 31, left her job as a hairdresser at a Bispham salon to go it alone at O’Hara Hair Salon in Victoria Road West, Cleveleys on July 4 last year – despite salons nationwide being ordered to close at the drop of a hat by the government during the pandemic.

But it was not her first time owning a business, and her creativity and skill shone through again with the help of senior stylist Brodie and junior stylist Becky.

The team scooped an award for the salon – and Natalie won one for her own talents – at the British Hair and Beauty Awards (BHBA) 2021.Natalie said: “I used to own Hairs and Graces near Spen Corner, but I sold it when I found out I was pregnant with my son Archie, who is now two.

Natalie Dean-Wenlock has won two awards at the British Hair and Beauty Awards. Pic: Daniel Martino/JPI Media

Natalie Dean-Wenlock has won two awards at the British Hair and Beauty Awards. Pic: Daniel Martino/JPI Media

“Then I went to work for a salon in Bispham but during lockdown I didn’t really know what I wanted to do or whether I wanted to go back. I realised I wanted to own my own salon again.

“After opening on July 4, we had to close in November for another lockdown, we reopened for Christmas and then had to close pretty much straight away with very little notice. So I was shocked when I had an email from the BHBA saying someone had nominated me for North West Hair Salon of the Year and for North West Hair Stylist of the Year – I still don’t know who it was!”

Natalie won Gold at the online awards ceremony for Hair Salon of the Year, and silver for Stylist of the Year in the North West regional categories.

In 2017, her former salon Hairs and Graces also bagged Hair Salon of the Year, as well as Salon of the Year at the Radio Wave Culture and Lifestyle Awards.

Natalie Dean-Wenlock has won two awards at the British Hair and Beauty Awards. Pic; Daniel Martino/JPI Media

Natalie Dean-Wenlock has won two awards at the British Hair and Beauty Awards. Pic; Daniel Martino/JPI Media

Natalie continued: “I couldn’t have done any of this without my clients, they are all fantastic and they’ve won these awards for me.

“My mum Irene and dad Bill helped me out so much – they really pushed me to just go for it, they’ve been amazing. none of this would have happened without them.”

 

 

New plastic-free eco shop coming to Fleetwood

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A new eco shop offering household essentials while avoiding plastic waste is set to open in Fleetwood.

 

Tracy Earnshaw, Jess Earnshaw and Amanda Cross (left to right) at the new Tram Weight shop, to open later this month

Tracy Earnshaw, Jess Earnshaw and Amanda Cross (left to right) at the new Tram Weight shop, to open later this month

The Tram Weigh will open its doors on Monday October 25 from premises at 50b North Albert Street in Fleetwood.

Customers will be able to buy products such as liquid soap, shampoo, laundry liquid, dog shampoo, ketchup, herbs and spices by simply bringing in their own bottles to be filled up, rather than buying new bottles which will later go in the bin.

There will also be plastic-free essentials such as washing-up sponges, bin liners and dog poo bags, all at affordable prices.

Shop owner Amanda Cross, 43, who is originally from Fleetwood but now lives in the Adlington area of central Lancashire, says she was inspired to open her own shop because she said similar eco outlets simply charged too much.

The mum-of-three said: “I wanted to shop at these eco-minded places but I just couldn’t afford it.

“I went to one place to fill up with shampoo and they were charging me £9.

“I can’t afford that – these shops are aimed at middle class people with big wages, selling high end products which are out of the reach of people like me.

“That’s why I decided to open my own shop – at affordable prices!”

Her first eco-themed shop, the Rail Weigh on Railway in in Adlington, opened last year and has proved a huge success.

Both shops come under her ‘ Little Pink Shop With The Big Green Mission’.

She said: “Our mission is pretty simple – to reduce plastic and all the harm that we now know it is causing.

“Recycling was a good idea in theory but it doesn’t really work effectively enough.

“The only way to stop all this plastic packaging causing chaos to our eco system is to stop buying it, day after day.”

Amanda says not only are her shops much cheaper than many other eco shops, with prices more on a par with lower end supermarkets, but some items are much cheaper than those sold conventionally.

As an example, she says that while Schwartz parsley would on average cost £1.70 to buy in the supermarket, her shops can refill it for just. 6p.

The Fleetwood shop will be run by Fleetwood woman Tracy Earnshaw and daughter Jess Earnshaw and will be open seven days a week with late evening openings for Christmas shoppers.

 

 

Starbucks drive-thru coffee shop to be built in Blackpool Asda car park

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Starbucks drive-thru coffee shop to be built in Blackpool Asda car park

 

The outlined red area shows where the coffee shop will be built

The outlined red area shows where the coffee shop will be built

Council planners gave the green light to the plans yesterday despite some objections from neighbours on nearby Wasdale Road and Chapel Road, who argued that the drive-thru would be ‘under-used and a waste of resources’, as two similar Starbucks and Costa Coffee shops recently opened at Squire’s Gate Retail Park in South Shore, and another can be found on Preston New Road.

But a statement submitted on behalf of the EG Group, which operates 142 Starbucks restaurants, said: “(The drive-thru) will be engineered to one storey and comprise a modern design which will comprise a positive enhancement to the site and surrounding area. It is proposed that the unit will operate 24 hours a day.

“The proposed development will result in economic benefits in the form of significant job creation in the form of 20 to 30 full-time employment positions.”

Plans submitted for the appearance of the shop

Plans submitted for the appearance of the shop

They added: “Given the specifics of the use proposed… it is clear that the unit will primarily draw trade from passing motorists. It is unlikely in the extreme that individuals will alter their shopping patterns to show preference for the unit as opposed to existing options within the town centre, which are more reliant on pass-by trade from pedestrians… It is therefore concluded that the proposed development is not of a scale to result in any adverse impact on existing centres.”

The creation of the restaurant will result in a reduction of 44 bays in the Asda car park, which developers say will not impact on shoppers due to the ‘clear overprovision’ of parking spaces on the site.

Another planning application for a drive-thru coffee shop was submitted to Blackpool Council in August. It proposed the demolition of the old Pizza Hut on Cornelian Way, and the building of a new restaurant at what is known locally as ‘Fat Man’s Corner’.

 

 

Blackpool’s Showtown museum costs come under fire

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A deal which will see the council pay £250,000 a year to lease space for  Blackpool’s Showtown Museum has been branded ‘astronomical’.

 

Coun Gerard Walsh said the agreement over 30 years, would see the council pay out at least £7.5m over that time to use the first floor of the Sands Hotel on Central Promenade.

The deal also includes rent rises every five years which will see the annual cost increase to nearly £290,000 after 25 years.

Constructing and fitting out the museum is also costing £13m.

Artist's impression of the Showtown museum

Artist’s impression of the Showtown museum

Coun Walsh told a meeting of the council’s tourism, economy and communities scrutiny committee it would have been better value for the council to buy its own building to house the museum in.

He said: “It is a missed opportunity – what could we have purchased for £ 7.5m, and the build is on top of that.”

Coun Walsh said had the council bought its own building, this would then have become an asset.

He added: “Is there any scope to renegotiate that figure, do we think it is market relevant now?

“It is astronomical. The starting point is £250,000 before we even open the front door.”

But council leader Coun Lynn Williams, who is also cabinet member for tourism, said the museum would be “a great addition” to the town and no other suitable sites had been found for it.

The meeting also heard the five yearly rent increases had been agreed to reflect inflation.

Initially it had been proposed to use space inside the Winter Gardens for the museum, but that £26m plan was axed in 2017 due to a funding shortfall.

Funding for the current scheme includes £4.4m from the Heritage Lottery Fund, £1.75m from the Coastal Communities Fund, £4m from the Northern Cultural Fund, £1.5m from the Lancashire Economic Partnership Growth Deal and £1m from Blackpool Council.

A council report setting out the lease agreement says: “Showtown has a robust and viable business plan.

“The cost of the rent has been taken into consideration in the development of the business model.”

The museum, which will tell the story of Blackpool and the seaside town’s role in the British entertainment scene, was due to open in 2022 but delays and the coronavirus pandemic mean it will not now open until April 2023.

 

 

Classic adaptations to open Lytham Hall plays season

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Classic adaptations to open Lytham Hall plays season

 

After record audiences this year, organiser Julian Wilde has been eager to give theatre fans an early taste of what to expect in 2022 and feels the programme offers “balance and diversity”.

The Lord Chamberlain’s Men will open the season with Shakespeare’s comedy As You Like It on Friday, June 17 following their sell-out performance of Macbeth on their first visit to the Hall this year.

Making their debut at the Hall on Friday, July 15 will be Heartbreak Productions with an adaptation of Jane Eyre.

A packed audience at a Lytham Hall performance this year

A packed audience at a Lytham Hall performance this year

Illyria, long a popular company at the venue, will then present family show Peter Pan on Friday, August 12 and Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream to days later followed by Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Pirates of Penzance on Sunday, August 21.

Huge demand for Lytham Hall outdoor theatre tickets

“We are still working on the details, but I have had many requests to make an early announcement of the titles and dates and I think that playgoers will be pleased with this variety.

“We always have a warm response from our audiences to adaptations of classic novels and the first two plays for the 2022 season will be the first time we have had a production of Jane Eyre.

“Heartbreak Productions, summer touring specialist sine 1991, are an experienced and accomplished company and I think we are in for a treat.

“The Lord Chamberlain’s Men received a standing ovation for Macbeth this summer and I am expecting a capacity audience for As You Like It which is one of Shakespeare’s most popular comedies.”

Proceeds from the plays go to the Lytham Hall Restoration Appeal.

Details of this year’s donation to the appeal fund from the record audiences which attended this year after just one play was possible in 2020, are expected to be announced later this month.

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Starbucks drive-thru coffee shop to be built in Blackpool Asda car park

Home | Blackpool Gazette

A drive-thru Starbucks coffee shop operating 24 hours a day will be built in the Asda car park on Cherry Treet Road, Marton, following approval from Blackpool Council.

 

The outlined red area shows where the coffee shop will be built

The outlined red area shows where the coffee shop will be built

Council planners gave the green light to the plans yesterday despite some objections from neighbours on nearby Wasdale Road and Chapel Road, who argued that the drive-thru would be ‘under-used and a waste of resources’, as two similar Starbucks and Costa Coffee shops recently opened at Squire’s Gate Retail Park in South Shore, and another can be found on Preston New Road.

But a statement submitted on behalf of the EG Group, which operates 142 Starbucks restaurants, said: “(The drive-thru) will be engineered to one storey and comprise a modern design which will comprise a positive enhancement to the site and surrounding area. It is proposed that the unit will operate 24 hours a day.

“The proposed development will result in economic benefits in the form of significant job creation in the form of 20 to 30 full-time employment positions.”

Plans submitted for the appearance of the shop

They added: “Given the specifics of the use proposed… it is clear that the unit will primarily draw trade from passing motorists. It is unlikely in the extreme that individuals will alter their shopping patterns to show preference for the unit as opposed to existing options within the town centre, which are more reliant on pass-by trade from pedestrians… It is therefore concluded that the proposed development is not of a scale to result in any adverse impact on existing centres.”

The creation of the restaurant will result in a reduction of 44 bays in the Asda car park, which developers say will not impact on shoppers due to the ‘clear overprovision’ of parking spaces on the site.

Another planning application for a drive-thru coffee shop was submitted to Blackpool Council in August. It proposed the demolition of the old Pizza Hut on Cornelian Way, and the building of a new restaurant at what is known locally as ‘Fat Man’s Corner’.

Building work on the approved Cherry Tree Road drive-thru is expected to begin within the next three years, in accordance with council rules.

 

 

Blackpool set for new Indian restaurant at site of women’s clothing shop

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Plans to convert the former shop in Highfield Road into a new restaurant have been approved

 

The proposed signage for the new restaurant
The proposed signage for the new restaurant (Image: Blackpool Council)

A new Indian restaurant is set to open in Blackpool.

An application from Mr and Mrs Morris and approved by Blackpool Council reveals plans for the former Gold Boutique shop at 107 Highfield Road.

The premises, in the middle of a row of commercial premises including shops, offices and takeaways, is to be converted into an Indian restaurant called A se Anar.

The plans reveal the restaurant will seat 19 people and will include a bar area, kitchen and toilets. The first floor will continue to be used as a separate residential flat.

With reference to the potential noise impact of the new restaurant the council’s planning officer states: “There is existing permanent residential accommodation located above the unit, therefore there is the potential for the scheme to have a negative impact on residential amenity. However, the site falls within a busy district centre and as such a higher level of noise disturbance and activity is an intrinsic and unavoidable element of living in the area.

“The previous use of the unit was as a shop and the neighbouring ground floor units are also in commercial uses, notably a restaurant and takeaway. Therefore there is little reason to assume that the change of use to a restaurant would generate any more noise disturbance than what already exists.”

The officer goes on to recommend permission be granted and states: “As set out above, the scheme is considered to represent sustainable development and no other material planning considerations have been identified that would outweigh this assessment. On this basis, planning permission should be approved.”

No objections were raised about the plans and the council has now formally granted permission.