Category Archives: Grand Theatre

Car parking in Blackpool: Where, cost, blue badge and motorhome spots and electric vehicle charging points

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The best places to park for Blackpool Pleasure Beach and other attractions – including opening times, prices, payment methods and more

West Street Car Park, Blackpool

Blackpool is fast approaching its busiest time with July being its most crowded month.

As Covid restrictions are gradually being lifted tourists will begin to flock to the area and once the summer season is over it is time for Blackpool Illuminations to take us into the darker nights of autumn.

The town has an excellent transport and tram system to get about however if you choose to drive, or need somewhere to park on arrival, it can be a little tricky to work out where.

Lancs Live has compiled a list of car parks, including multi-storeys, for reference and details such as Blue Badge spaces and parking concessions, payment methods, opening times, electric charging points and where accepts motor homes and coaches.

Blackpool Pleasure Beach

Blackpool Pleasure Beach has five car parks located at:

• North Car Park (Balmoral Road) – from £18 on the day, online £18 (off peak), £20 (peak) guaranteed reserved space
• East Car Park (Bond Street) – from £15.00
• Arena Car Park(Watson Road) – from £10
• West Car Park (Ocean Boulevard) – from £15.00
• Railway Station Car Park (Bond Street)

Parking facilities for disabled guests are available at all car parks. Car parking charges apply.

There are currently no parking facilities for caravans and mobile homes

Generic view of Banks Street car park (Image: Google Street View)

Blackpool Pleasure Beach now has an electric car charging point which can be used by guests. This point is located at the rear of Balmoral Road Car Park, please ask car parking attendants for directions.

There are also Pod Point Open Charge electric vehicle charging on-site for visitors.

  • – There are 2 x 7kW charging bays available.
    Each bay has a Type 2 universal socket.- It costs £1.50 per hour for 4 hours, then it is free.

Use the Pod Point Open Charge app to start charging and see live availability.
Visit Pod Point’s website for further instructions on how to use Open Charge points.

Car park closing times do vary but as a rule stay open until 10pm during the high season and 7pm during the low season and winter period.

Blackpool Council also provide car parking facilities throughout the town, including:

  • Short-stay car parks
  • Long-stay car parks
  • Coach and commercial car parks
  • Parking for motor homes
  • Parking for motorcycles

Bank Street Car Park – 24 hours – FY1 2DT

  • 16 blue badge spaces – free for 3 hours

You can use the PayByPhone app to pay for your stay in this car park, giving you complete control from your own phone.

You can download the PayByPhone app from the App Store or Google Play Store or visit the PayByPhone website. Once downloaded just enter the correct identification number for your vehicle type.

Up to 2 hours Cars £2.50
Up to 4 hours Cars £4
Up to 6 hours Cars £5
Up to 8 hours Cars £6
Up to 12 hours Cars £8
Up to 18 hours Cars £10
Up to 24 hours Cars £12
Up to 48 hours Cars £14
Up to 72 hours Cars £17
Up to 96 hours Cars £20
Up to 45 minutes Coaches £2
Up to 4 hours Coaches £6
Up to 24 hours Coaches £12
Up to 48 hours Coaches £17
Up to 72 hours Coaches £20
Up to 24 hours – Winter Rate Coaches £6
Up to 12 hours Motorhomes £10
Up to 24 hours (as Coach rate) Motorhomes £12

Bethesda Road Car Park- 24 hours – FY1 5EF

  • 3 Blue badge spaces

Payment is by pay and display machines. One machine accepts credit/debit cards and coins, one accepts coins only – No change given

Up to 1 hour Cars £1
Up to 2 hours Cars £2
Up to 3 hours Cars £3
Up to 4 hours Cars £4
Up to 8 hours Cars £6
Up to 12 hours Cars £8
Up to 24 hours Cars £12
Up to 48 hours Cars £14
Up to 72 hours Cars £17
Up to 96 hours Cars £20

Bloomfield Park Road Car park (Seasiders Way) – 24 hours – FY1 6HX

  • 25 Blue badge spaces

Payment is by pay and display machines which accept credit/debit cards and coins – No change given

Up to 3 hours Cars £3.50
Up to 6 hours Cars £6
Up to 12 hours Cars £10
Up to 18 hours Cars £11
Up to 24 hours Cars £12
Up to 48 hours Cars £14
Up to 72 hours Cars £17
Up to 96 hours Cars £20

Bolton Street Car Park – 24 hours – FY1 6AA

  • 3 Blue badges spaces

Payment is by pay and display machines which accept credit/debit cards, coins, contactless- No change given

Up to 3 hours Cars £3.50
Up to 6 hours Cars £6
Up to 12 hours Cars £10
Up to 18 hours Cars £11
Up to 24 hours Cars £12
Up to 48 hours Cars £14
Up to 72 hours Cars £17
Up to 96 hours Cars £20

Bonny Street Car Park – 24 hours – FY1 5AR

  • 7 Blue badge spaces

Payment is by pay and display machines. Machines accepts credit/debit cards and coins, one accepts contactless – No change given

Up to 2 hours Cars £3
Up to 3 hours Cars £4.50
Up to 4 hours Cars £5.50
Up to 6 hours Cars £7.50
Up to 8 hours Cars £10
Up to 12 hours Cars £12
Up to 18 hours Cars £13
Up to 24 hours Cars £14
Up to 48 hours Cars £16
Up to 72 hours Cars £18
Up to 96 hours Cars £20

Central Car Park (Seasiders Way/Central Drive, Blackpool) – 24 hours – FY1 5QB

  • 34 Blue badge spaces

Payment is by 9 pay and display machine, all of which accept credit/debit cards and coins – No change given

4 x 22kw electric charge bays situated at the north end of the site alongside the coach drop-off/pick-up area

Cost – The charging rate is currently 30 pence per unit

Driver needs to download the EVdot app, this is the only method of payment accepted to use these charging stations

Up to 2 hours Cars £3
Up to 3 hours Cars £4.50
Up to 4 hours Cars £5.50
Up to 6 hours Cars £7.50
Up to 8 hours Cars £10
Up to 12 hours Cars £12
Up to 18 hours Cars £13
Up to 24 hours Cars £14
Up to 48 hours Cars £16
Up to 72 hours Cars £18
Up to 96 hours Cars £20

Chapel Street – 24 hours – FY1 5AW

  • 9 Blue Badge spaces

Payment is by 3 pay and display machines which accept coins only – No change given

Up to 2 hours Cars £3
Up to 3 hours Cars £4.50
Up to 4 hours Cars £5.50
Up to 6 hours Cars £7.50
Up to 8 hours Cars £10
Up to 12 hours Cars £12
Up to 18 hours Cars £13
Up to 24 hours Cars £14
Up to 48 hours Cars £16
Up to 72 hours Cars £18
Up to 96 hours Cars £20

Cocker Street Blackpool – 24 hours – FY1 1RX

  • 2 Blue badge bays

Payment is by pay and display machine which accept credit/debit cards, coins, contactless- No change given

Up to 2 hours Cars £2.50
Up to 4 hours Cars £4
Up to 6 hours Cars £5
Up to 8 hours Cars £6
Up to 12 hours Cars £8
Up to 18 hours Cars £10
Up to 24 hours Cars £12
Up to 48 hours Cars £14
Up to 72 hours Cars £17
Up to 96 hours Cars £20

East Topping Street – 24 hours – FY1 3AS

  • 9 Blue badge spaces

Payment is by 4 pay and display machines which accept credit/debit cards – No change given.

Up to 2 hours Cars £3
Up to 3 hours Cars £4.50
Up to 4 hours Cars £5.50
Up to 6 hours Cars £7.50
Up to 8 hours Cars £10
Up to 12 hours Cars £12
Up to 18 hours Cars £13
Up to 24 hours Cars £14
Up to 48 hours Cars £16
Up to 72 hours Cars £18
Up to 96 hours Cars £20

Filey Place (Banks Street) – 24 hours – FY1 1RN

  • 4 Blue badge spaces – free for 3 hours

Payment is by pay and display machine which accept credit/debit cards, coins, contactless – No change given

Up to 4 hours Cars £5
Up to 8 hours Cars £10
Up to 12 hours Cars £12
Up to 24 hours Cars £13

Foxhall Village (Seasiders Way) – 24 hours FY1 6JX

  • 10 Blue badge spaces – free for 3 hours
  • 15 coach bays – Cars must not park in coach bays

Payment is by 3 pay and display machines which accept credit/debit cards and coins – No change given

Up to 3 hours Cars £3.50
Up to 6 hours Cars £6
Up to 12 hours Cars £10
Up to 18 hours Cars £11
Up to 24 hours Cars £12
Up to 48 hours Cars £14
Up to 72 hours Cars £17
Up to 96 hours Cars £20
Up to 45 minutes Coaches £2
Up to 4 hours Coaches £6
Up to 24 hours Coaches £12
Up to 48 hours Coaches £17
Up to 72 hours Coaches £20
Up to 24 hours – Winter Rate Coaches £6
Up to 12 hours Motorhomes £10

Gyn Square ( Warbreck Hill Road) – 24 hours – FY1 2JR

  • 4 blue badge spaces – free for 3 hours
  • 12 coach bays – Cars must not park in coach bays

Payment is by 2 pay and display machines which accept credit/debit cards, coins, contactless – No change given

Up to 3 hours Cars £2
Up to 4 hours Cars £2.50
Up to 8 hours Cars £4
Up to 12 hours Cars £6
Up to 18 hours Cars £9
Up to 24 hours Cars £10
Up to 48 hours Cars £14
Up to 72 hours Cars £17
Up to 96 hours Cars £20
Up to 45 minutes Coaches £2
Up to 4 hours Coaches £6
Up to 24 hours Coaches £12
Up to 48 hours Coaches £17
Up to 72 hours Coaches £20
Up to 24 hours – Winter Rate Coaches £6
Up to 12 hours Motorhomes £10

Lonsdale Road (Seasiders Way) – 24 hours – FY1 6JX

Payment is by pay and display machines which accept credit/debit cards and coins – No change given

  • 18 blue badge spaces – free for 3 hours
Up to 3 hours Cars £3.50
Up to 6 hours Cars £6
Up to 12 hours Cars £10
Up to 18 hours Cars £11
Up to 24 hours Cars £12
Up to 48 hours Cars £14
Up to 72 hours Cars £17
Up to 96 hours Cars £20

Lytham Road – 24 hours – FY4 1HT

  • Blue badge holders must display a clock beside their badge showing their arrival time to qualify for a 3 hour free concession.

Payment is by pay and display machine which accept credit/debit cards, coins, contactless – No change given

Up to 3 hours Cars £3.50
Up to 6 hours Cars £6
Up to 12 hours Cars £10
Up to 18 hours Cars £11
Up to 24 hours Cars £12
Up to 48 hours Cars £14
Up to 72 hours Cars £17
Up to 96 hours Cars £20
Up to 12 hours Motorhomes £10

Queen Street – 24 hours – FY1 1PX

  • 1 Blue badge space

Payment is by 2 pay and display machines, one of which accepts credit/debit cards, coins, contactless – No change given

Up to 2 hours Cars £3
Up to 3 hours Cars £4.50
Up to 4 hours Cars £5.50
Up to 6 hours Cars £7.50
Up to 8 hours Cars £10
Up to 12 hours Cars £12
Up to 18 hours Cars £13
Up to 24 hours Cars £14
Up to 48 hours Cars £16
Up to 72 hours Cars £18
Up to 96 hours Cars £20

South Beach ( South Promenade) – 24 hours – FY4 1PL

  • 11 blue badge spaces – free for 3 hours

Payment is by pay and display machines which accept credit/debit cards, coins, contactless- No change given

Up to 3 hours Cars £5
Up to 12 hours Cars £8
Up to 18 hours Cars £9
Up to 24 hours Cars £12
Up to 48 hours Cars £14
Up to 72 hours Cars £17
Up to 96 hours Cars £20

South Car Park (Yeadon Way) – 24 hours – FY1 6BF

  • 19 Blue badge spaces – free for 3 hours

Payment is by 5 pay and display machines which accept credit/debit cards, coins, contactless – No change given

Up to 3 hours Cars £3.50
Up to 6 hours Cars £6
Up to 12 hours Cars £10
Up to 18 hours Cars £11
Up to 24 hours Cars £12
Up to 48 hours Cars £14
Up to 72 hours Cars £17
Up to 96 hours Cars £20
Up to 45 minutes Coaches £2
Up to 4 hours Coaches £6
Up to 24 hours Coaches £12
Up to 48 hours Coaches £17
Up to 72 hours Coaches £20
Up to 24 hours – Winter Rate Coaches £6
Up to 12 hours Motorhomes £10

South King Street Car Park (Charnley Road) – 24 hours – FY1 4AX

  • 2 Blue Badge spaces

Payment is by pay and display machine which accept credit/debit cards, coins, contactless – No change given

Up to 2 hours Cars £2.50
Up to 4 hours Cars £4
Up to 6 hours Cars £5
Up to 8 hours Cars £6
Up to 12 hours Cars £8
Up to 18 hours Cars £10
Up to 24 hours Cars £12
Up to 48 hours Cars £14
Up to 72 hours Cars £17
Up to 96 hours Cars £20

Talbot Road Multi-storey Car Park – Mon to Sun, 7am to 12 midnight – FY1 3AU

  • 38 Blue badge parking bays are available – However, there is no free parking concession

Payment is by 4 pay on foot machines which accept credit/debit cards and coins – Change given

Up to 2 hours Cars £3
Up to 3 hours Cars £4.50
Up to 4 hours Cars £5.50
Up to 6 hours Cars £7.50
Up to 8 hours Cars £10
Up to 12 hours Cars £12
Up to 18 hours Cars £13
Up to 24 hours Cars £14
Up to 48 hours Cars £16
Up to 72 hours Cars £18
Up to 96 hours Cars £20

West Street Car Park – daily 7.00am – 12.30am – FY1 1HA

  • 9 blue badge spaces

Payment is by 5 pay and display machines, all accept credit cards, debit cards, and coins.
4 also offer contactless payment. If paying with coins please have the correct amount available – No change given

Up to 2 hours Cars £3
Up to 3 hours Cars £4.50
Up to 4 hours Cars £5.50
Up to 6 hours Cars £7.50
Up to 8 hours Cars £10
Up to 12 hours Cars £12
Up to 24 hours Cars £14
Up to 48 hours Cars £16
Up to 72 hours Cars £18
Up to 96 hours Cars £20

Wimbourne Palce Car park (New South Promenade) – 24 hours – FY4 1NJ

  • 4 Blue badge spaces

Payment is by pay and display machine which accept credit/debit cards, coins, contactless – No change given

Up to 2 hours Cars £2.50
Up to 4 hours Cars £4
Up to 6 hours Cars £5
Up to 8 hours Cars £6
Up to 12 hours Cars £8
Up to 18 hours Cars £10
Up to 24 hours Cars £12
Up to 48 hours Cars £14
Up to 72 hours Cars £17
Up to 96 hours Cars £20

 

 

Blackpool is back! Resort celebrates biggest unlocking of lockdown yet

Home | Blackpool Gazette

The sun shone on the resort, which today celebrated the biggest unlocking of Covid restrictions yet.

With arcades, pubs, eateries and attractions filled by the sound of chatter and laughter – and the jingling of tills – the excitement was palpable as traders declared: ‘Blackpool is back’.

To mark the big day, a 70m etching of the town’s skyline – including the Tower, Central Pier’s big wheel, and the Big One – was raked into the sand on the beach.

“We are thrilled our tourism businesses can get back to doing what they do best – providing fun and entertainment to millions of people,” tourism chief Coun Gillian Campbell said.

To mark the big day, a 70m etching of the town’s skyline – including the Tower, Central Pier’s big wheel, and the Big One – was raked into the sand on the beachTo mark the big day, a 70m etching of the town’s skyline – including the Tower, Central Pier’s big wheel, and the Big One – was raked into the sand on the beach

“The last 15 months have been incredibly difficult but finally we can tell the world that we are back in business.”

The easing of lockdown measures meant major attractions like the Tower and Circus, Sandcastle Waterpark, Coral Island arcade, Sea Life aquarium, and Madame Tussauds waxworks museum could all reopen for the first time in months ahead of the upcoming bank holiday.

Other indoor venues welcoming visitors once again include Winter Gardens, Funny Girls, Viva, and hundreds of hotels and guest houses – including the new Premier Inn North Pier, built on the site of the burned down Yates’s Wine Lodge in Talbot Square.

Friends Mary Caveney and Maria Farrar at the Winter Gardens
Friends Mary Caveney and Maria Farrar at the Winter Gardens

“We are feeling a range of emotions at the moment but mainly we are all raring to go.”

Tower Circus clowns Mooky and Boo took to the Comedy Carpet this afternoon to practice.

Mooky said: “We’ve been rehearsing for this day since the beginning of the second lockdown and we can’t wait to be entertaining live audiences once again.”

Last month, self-catering accommodation and outdoor hospitality and attractions – including the Pleasure Beach, Blackpool Zoo, and the resort’s three piers – were allowed to open.

Jade Benson and Joe Cooper pulling pints in the Brew Room.Jade Benson and Joe Cooper pulling pints in the Brew Room.

The next phase, which would see all remaining restrictions on social contact scrapped, is pencilled in for June 21 – although concern over the Indian variant of coronavirus has cast doubt on that date.

That dark cloud on the horizon didn’t dampen any spirits, though.

Friends Mary Caveney, 69 and Maria Farrar, 68, were among the first few to sit down for a cup of tea and a sandwich in the Winter Gardens.

The pair hadn’t seen each other since before Christmas and were enjoying a catch up.

Three-year-old Jaiden and six-year-old Jasmine at the arcades on Central PierThree-year-old Jaiden and six-year-old Jasmine at the arcades on Central Pier

Maria, of Norbreck Road in Bispham, said: “It’s the first time I have been on the trams in over a year and I am really happy to be out.

“Mary and I haven’t seen each other for quite a while and decided we’d meet today.

“It seems really weird to say it but I have found it quite emotional coming back into Blackpool because it has been so long.

“It’s quite a big deal for me and we had been talking about the Winter Gardens so we have come here especially to have a nice gossip and natter.”

Mary, of Willow Bank Avenue in South Shore, said: “I’m slightly different as I have been out a few times as I can’t stand being cooped up in the house.

“I have been very impressed with how all the businesses have been dealing with the lockdown relaxation so it’s really good to be out.”

The arcades were all open again in BlackpoolThe arcades were all open again in Blackpool

The pair, who have known each other for more than 15 years, have both had their two jabs and feel safer than earlier in the pandemic.

Maria said: “It gives you a sense of security knowing you have the vaccine in you.

“Perhaps it won’t stop me from catching it but it makes me feel like I won’t end up in hospital with it.

“I don’t like wearing my mask at all but I do it out of courtesy and you don’t have to wear it while you are sitting down having a bite to eat and a cuppa anyway.”

Mary added: “There has been far fewer flu and food poisoning since we all started wearing masks so I’m all for them.

“I don’t like wearing them all the time but they have their plus points.

“It makes you think how many people haven’t been washing their hands all these years.”

Susan and Barry Taylor from Bispham said they think the resort is back in business for good – and had a pint at The Brew Room in Church Street for the first time this year.

Susan, 70, said: “It feels really good to be in the pub again after the year we have had.

“I’ve had problems with my heart and am having tests on it, so it feels great to have something to look forward to and enjoy at the moment.

“We really like the food in here and we knew it would be one of the first places to go once it reopened.

“It’s also great to be supporting local business and workers in Blackpool because they have all been hit hard recently.

Barry, 69, added: “It really does feel great to be doing things in Blackpool again and back in some sort of routine.

“It’s a Marmite town but one that some people really do love and it is great to see people coming back on their holidays here so soon as well.

“For Susan and I, it’s just great to be able to have a stroll round town and pop in for some pub grub, which we have been missing.

“We just have to hope that this is the last of the virus and we don’t get pushed into another lockdown.”

Businessman and former Blackpool mayor Robert Wynne, owner of The Brew Room, The Rose and Crown, and West Coast Rock Cafe, said the response to lockdown relaxation has been super.

He said: “It has been a really positive start for all three places.

“We are offering online table bookings and in the last two weeks we have done 1,200 bookings.

“We are also allowing walk-in customers and the response at West Coast has been brilliant on the first day.

“It’s great to have both Blackpool residents and tourists back in the town and with even more options for them to do something they haven’t been able to do in so long.”

Friends Gail Prasher, Maureen Penfold and Eve Wells from Banbury in Oxfordshire came to Blackpool for the weekend and had been looking forward to the resort’s arcades being open again.

The trio were at Central Pier on the penny machines.

Gail said: “I’ve been coming to Blackpool every year since I was a child and I just really enjoy it.

“With all the restrictions being relaxed we thought we would make a weekend of it.

“It’s just nice that we can do stuff like this again and not be in fear of the virus all the time.

“It does help having the vaccine as well.”

Maureen added: “I think doing things like being at the arcade helps a bit with your mental health as it is something different for your brain to try out.

“We’ve not had much luck yet in the arcade – but fingers crossed we will before we leave.”

And Eve said: “The thing I most enjoy about Blackpool is the same thing I have missed in the last year – socialising. Everyone is so friendly here and they make you feel welcome.

“It’s always good to get the opportunity to come and we have all had a good weekend of shopping, drinking and enjoying being out with friends again.”

James Mulachy from Liverpool visited with his family and also took advantage of the arcades reopening to entertain his children, Jaiden, three, and Jasmine, six.

He said: “We hired a lodge for the weekend because the children really love it in Blackpool.

“It’s really good to get away from your house because after so long you get sick of seeing the same thing all the time.

“We head back today but it was good to get them into the arcades after so long.

“Each relaxation of the lockdown feels like normality is being resumed again and it has definitely put a smile on Jaiden and Jasmine.”

WHAT CHANGED?

Since midnight, people in England have been able to meet outdoors in groups of up to 30, and indoors in groups of six, or two households.

Pubs and restaurants are able to serve customers outdoors, although they are still limited to table service.

Other recreational venues such as cinemas, museums, theatres, and concert halls are allowed to open, although there are capacity limits on large events.

Up to 30 people are allowed at weddings, and the cap on the number of mourners attending funerals was lifted, in line with the safe capacity of venues.

Secondary school pupils in most areas are no longer being told to wear face masks in class and communal areas, and university students can return to campus for in-person lectures.

The ‘stay in the UK’ restriction has lifted and people can travel to ‘green list’ countries without having to quarantine, provided they take on post-arrival test.

FLY IN THE OINTMENT?

Boris Johnson and health experts urged people to exercise caution when they head to pubs and restaurants as the lockdown eases despite concerns about the spread of an Indian coronavirus variant.

Although ministers believe the vaccines will be effective against the highly transmissible Indian variant of concern, there are worries about the impact of its spread on those who have refused to have a jab or not yet been offered one.

The Prime Minister urged people to treat the latest easing of restrictions with a “heavy dose of caution” while Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng warned against excessive drinking for those returning to bars.

Mr Kwarteng insisted the June 21 date for the ending of restrictions in England was still likely to be met.

He said “people should have common sense, they should use judgment and I think if we act in a reasonable way, there is no reason to suppose that we can’t reopen the economy entirely on June 21”.

He added: “We need to be cautious because if we get too carried away and the mutant variant spreads too quickly, that could endanger our ability to open up on June 21.”

Professor Graham Medley, a member of the Government’s Sage scientific advisory panel, said the chances of the June 21 date being delayed was “well less than 50 per cent” but added “it is uncertain”.

The main cause for concern is the Indian variant, which is on the way to becoming the dominant strain in some places including Bolton and Blackburn.

A major campaign has been launched to encourage people in those areas to receive a jab.

Mr Kwarteng said he did not want to “stigmatise people” over vaccine hesitancy, but said: “We’re not exactly where we want to be among certain communities but I think the take-up has been much greater in the last few months and more and more people are convinced that this is the way to keep themselves and their families safe.”

Dr Helen Wall, who is leading the vaccination effort in Bolton, said over the weekend more than 6,200 vaccines were administered in the area.

She said before the weekend there were around 10,000 people in the area in the highest priority groups, those deemed to be clinically vulnerable and the over-50s, who were yet to be vaccinated, but added: “I’m hoping that we’ve made a big dent into that now”.

Chris Hopson, chief executive of NHS Providers, said there were “concerns” about small numbers of older people who are yet to take up their vaccine offer.

“The biggest risk comes from, if there are large numbers of older people who are unvaccinated,” he said.

Mr Kwarteng defended the timing of tougher restrictions being imposed on travel from India amid speculation decisions may have been delayed due to the Prime Minister’s planned trade mission to the country in April.

India was placed on the red list, effectively banning travel except for returning Britons who had to go into a quarantine hotel, on April 23.

“It is easy with hindsight to say things could have been better or quicker and all the rest of it, but I think there was a balanced approach,” he said.

Despite the pleas for caution, some drinkers took advantage of the relaxations to sink pints shortly after midnight yesterday.

 

How forgotten man of comedy show had radio, TV and stage seasons in Blackpool

Home | Blackpool Gazette

A 1958 programme from when Dave Morris performed in Blackpool

A 1958 programme from when Dave Morris performed in Blackpool

A television series is the aim of today’s likely lads of comedy. But imagine how unlikely it would have been when there were only two channels.

In continuing the story of Blackpool comedian Dave Morris, we find that Dave actually did it in 1957 with his Club Night show.

Dave is one of the forgotten men of comedy. The broadcasts were not archived but having radio, television and stage seasons of the same show is worth a time-line.

Comedian Dave MorrisComedian Dave Morris

After 20 years of touring the variety theatres, Middlesbrough-born Dave stepped up in 1940 to stardom in Blackpool summer shows. It was the first of seven consecutive seasons at the North Pier.

After a 1947 season at the Opera House, Dave produced his own summer shows at the South Pier from 1948 to 52.

We rejoin him in his third season at the pier, spending his down time by writing a radio series of Club Night, the result of having a drink with the BBC’s Robert Stead, who was looking for new ideas.

It went on the air in November, 1950, the first of several series. Dave cannily retained the stage rights.

In 1950 Dave was 54. He was tubby and very short-sighted, the result of a gas attack while fighting on the Western Front during the First World War. Hardly a likely lad for a TV series.

His trade marks were a straw “boater” hat, a big cigar and a fast, wisecracking style.

Unlike most radio sitcoms, Club Night was ideal for the stage and became Dave’s summer show at the South Pier for both 1951 and 52. It then toured the variety theatres, with several Blackpool visits.

The radio series ended in 1955 and for two years Dave toured in a patter act with his “feed” Joe Gladwin.

Television was on the rise and the BBC suggested a screen version of Club Night in 1957. The TV version was made in Manchester by the young John Ammonds, later to become one of the BBC’s top producers.

It was noticed by George and Alfred Black, the London-based producers of the Blackpool Tower Company’s summer shows at the Opera House, the Winter Gardens Pavilion and the Grand Theatre.

They were looking for a 1958 summer show for Blackpool’s Palace Theatre and Club Night filled the bill – eight years after its radio debut.

It was a late career boost for Dave. A Gazette reviewer noted: “As a topical comedian Dave is unrivalled.”

In 1959 Dave returned to the South Pier under the title Dave’s Back and co-wrote a new TV sitcom with Blackpool writer Frank Roscoe. In The Artful Dodger, Dave’s character was a football fan who would do anything to avoid working.

A Gazette writer thought it was the funniest thing on TV with the exception of Hancock’s Half Hour. A second series was planned but during the winter Dave was disabled by a stroke and died on June 8, 1960, a month before his 64th birthday.

There was a big disappointment in Dave Morris’s merry progress through the 1950s.

In April, 1955, the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh were on a tour of Lancashire and a special Royal Variety Performance was staged at the Opera House.

Several northern comics were in the cast. But not Dave, who had done more Blackpool shows than any of the others, who lived in the resort and was a respected publicist for the town. The producer of the royal show was bandleader-turned-impresario Jack Hylton, who had failed to get the stage rights to Club Night. Dave hadn’t danced to Hylton’s tune and was offered a mere “walk on” during the opening scene.

He declined.

Tiny wine bars, big rides and huge hopes: What Blackpool has waiting for visitors next week

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

“We’re really looking forward to be welcoming guests as soon as possible, I think everyone needs a glass of wine after this year! ”

The sun rises behind the Blackpool Tower in Blackpool, Lancashire. Picture date: Friday April 2, 2021. PA Photo. Photo credit should read: Peter Byrne/PA Wire
The sun rises behind the Blackpool Tower in Blackpool, Lancashire. (Image: PA)

Blackpool is set to welcome back visitors to its bars, theatres and attractions on May 17 following a government announcement that remaining restrictions on the town’s tourism industry can be safely lifted.

The next step of the Prime Minister’s roadmap is now for indoor hospitality and attractions to reopen along with show venues, hotels and guesthouses.

The past 15 months has seen Blackpool face its biggest challenges in a long history of successful tourism.

Even throughout the first and second world wars the town attractions could largely remain open as a form of escapism for both locals and visitors.

The coronavirus pandemic however has meant many bars, pubs and hotels have been unable to accommodate customers, rendering its beach and promenades uncharacteristically quiet.

Sadly some businesses have not made it to the other side of lockdown, with the financial burden too great. However for some, the down time has been an opportunity to renovate and create.

Amazing lockdown transformation at Lemmy's Bar in Waterloo Music Bar, Blackpool
Amazing lockdown transformation at Lemmy’s Bar in Waterloo Music Bar, Blackpool (Image: Waterloo Music Bar, Blackpool)

Waterloo Music Bar in Waterloo Road has had a particularly hard time after it failed to secure government funding to help it get through the Covid crisis.

Throughout the pandemic loyal customers and musicians have joined a campaign to save the bar from closure with Music Venue Trust getting involved.

Staff have come up with all kinds of creative ideas from selling merchandise to wild and wonderful ideas for virtual events to help raise funds after a year with no income.

Lockdown provided the opportunity to add to the already meticulously decorated bar and its infamous Motorhead-themed Lemmy’s bar.

Owner Ian Fletcher said: “The Waterloo Music Bar can’t wait to open it’s doors again on May 17, and our team are very excited to welcome everyone back to see what we have been doing through lockdown.

“We have the one and only Lemmy’s Motorhead-themed bar in the UK and our entire venue is packed with music memorabilia and artwork. We can only operate at reduced capacity from May until June 21, which means our early gigs are mostly sold out, but we have an epic year of music coming up, just checkout our website for dates and tickets.”

International graffiti and street artist, Chris Fenn AKA Seca One Art, has painted a spectacularly colourful mural of grapes and flowers on the front Nook Wine bar set to open in May 2020
International graffiti and street artist, Chris Fenn AKA Seca One Art, has painted a spectacularly colourful mural of grapes and flowers on the front Nook Wine bar set to open in May 2020 (Image: Nook Wine Bar)

Lockdown also saw the creation of the town’s smallest wine bar. Tucked away down Cheapside, a former sandwich shop, the Hideaway, was transformed into Nook wine bar, a small but mightynew bar for 2021.

Spectacularly painted with a colourful mural by Blackpool’s International graffiti and street artist Seca One Art, the bar will not be just another “stuffy wine gaff” and will be focusing on serving premium and unique wines from all around the world.

Owner Jake Whittington, who also owns Dirty Blondes and Paradise Coast said: “Nook will be Blackpool’s first wine and charcuterie venue, so there’s a lot of excitement, and pressure, around the project.

“The tired old building has had to have extensive work done for such a small place. We were really aiming to get open for the 17th, but we may be running a couple of weeks behind.

“Opening a bar in lockdown is a challenge to say the least, suppliers and contractors are running at a reduced capacity so it certainly makes for an interesting time! We’re really looking forward to be welcoming guests as soon as possible, I think everyone needs a glass of wine after this year! ”

Madame Tussauds, Blackpool during lockdown two
Madame Tussauds, Blackpool during lockdown two (Image: This is influential)

Excitement is building at the news that some of Blackpool’s biggest and longstanding attractions will be able to welcome customers back including the Tower, the Dungeons and Madame Tussauds.

After operating at a reduced capacity at times the well-loved destinations had to close completely during the third national lockdown.

Now the iconic landmarks can begin to come back to life.

Kate Shane, Head of the Blackpool Cluster for Merlin Entertainments, said: “We’ve been counting down the days until we can reopen our doors at The Blackpool Tower attractions, Sea Life and Madame Tussauds, so it’s great to have the green light for this to go ahead.

“Our teams are overjoyed to be back and this week they are busy with final preparations for our attractions opening on the May 17 alongside final rehearsals for The Blackpool Tower Dungeons and Circus which open on Saturday May 22.

“We have all been separated from our families and friends for over 12 months, so we simply can’t wait to reconnect loved ones and help them make magical new memories together.

“Our attractions were created for fun, so we’re counting down the days until we can see the smiles and hear the laughter of our guests once more.”


Blackpool Pleasure Beach

Blackpool Pleasure Beach will also be able to get back to normal with visitors able to experience more fun at the fair.

After re-opening on April 12 it has been receiving guests on a daily basis however the lifting of restrictions means its guests can enjoy more.

A Spokesperson for Blackpool Pleasure Beach said: From 17th May we will be able to reopen our both of our hotels, The Big Blue and The Boulevard, which will see many more visitors coming to the resort.

“In addition to this the White Tower restaurant and our indoor attractions Ripley’s Believe It or Not, Pasaje Del Terror and will open again and provide much more for our guests to enjoy.”

For more information on where to visit in Blackpool come May 17, please visit Visit Blackpool.

Blackpool Grand Theatre asks guests to ‘name a seat’ to help save the venue’s future

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The venue has come up with several ways to generate income to continue to make memories for the children, families, visitors and friends who have grown up with the theatre that is still facing an uncertain future

The Grand Theatre in Blackpool
The Grand Theatre in Blackpool (Image: Andrew Teebay/Liverpool Echo)

Blackpool Grand Theatre is asking for help from the public to help it survive what it says is ‘the most unprecedented time in its history”.

Built to be the “prettiest theatre in the land” by Victorian architect Frank Matcham in 1894, the venue has become much more than just a grade II listed building.

The historic theatre is now an active charity with social, educational and artistic aims and runs a full programme of workshops for children and young people, in and out of school which focus on improving literacy, numeracy, social skills and confidence.

Like many theatres across the country, the Grand suffered during the coronavirus pandemic, making no income since the first lockdown in March 2020 and having furloughed 57 staff.

This month the venue received a grant of £491,000 in the second round of the Government’s £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund to help the organisation recover and reopen.

Ruth Eastwood, Blackpool Grand Chief Executive, said: “We are delighted to receive this grant from the Government Treasury and Arts Council England Cultural Recovery Fund. It will allow us to prepare to reopen and, if all goes well, be trading again from the Autumn.

“It cannot be underestimated, the devastation Covid has caused for so many: our patrons; our employees, past and present; and our organisation. We have been forced to cut costs to protect the business, including reducing the staff to the bare minimum. With this support, we will be able to, rebuild, recruit and buy-in ‘product’ ready to start afresh.

““We are delighted that the Treasury, DCMS, and Arts Council England see the value and importance of supporting a community theatre like Blackpool Grand and the work does to create public benefit through arts, education and heritage.

“Nevertheless, this will not be a fast-passed opening, but a cautious and steady one. We are committed to ensuring a safe and comfortable environment for our patrons, performers and employees, and look forward to welcoming them back.”

Inside Blackpool Grand Theatre located on Church Street, Blackpool
Inside Blackpool Grand Theatre located on Church Street, Blackpool (Image: Blackpool Grand Theatre)

Despite the grant there is still uncertainty ahead however with many businesses expected to operate under restrictions when they reopen and the Grand’s capacity alone will reduce from 1,053 to 350 if one-metre social distancing is required.

The venue has come up with several ways to generate income make memories for the children, families, visitors and friends who have grown up with the theatre.

One of the ways is to support Blackpool’s Grand Theatre Artistic Programme by donating to its #nameaseat fundraiser.

Whether it’s to show your love for the theatre, remember a loved one or to give a unique gift, a minimum £350 donation will be marked by a plaque with a name of your choice that is fitted to the back of the seat.

Leaving a lasting mark in the theatre’s main auditorium, your plaque will be present for 10 years in the Stalls or Dress Circle.

There is also the Blackpool Grand Recovery Fund where supporters can donate however big or small to help it through the crisis.

The venue has also launched a new collection of Grand themed merchandise in an online shop with a beautifully created collection of postcards, notebooks, a mouses mat and more.

To find out how you can support Blackpool Grand theatre in many others ways, please visit here.