Join Blackpool Civic Trust
Illuminasia entry at a reduced price of £5 each for the rest of 2015, on production of your current Blackpool Civic Trust Membership Card.
Imperial Hotel Tile Project Update - December
We are making very rapid progress with our tile project at the Imperial Hotel. We continued working in the third week of December, which gave us a good appetite for Christmas dinner!
Our next regular session will be the third week of January from Monday to Thursday (9.30 - 4.30) inclusive. If you can spare an hour or two why not come along and join us. All Civic Trust members are very welcome.
Our Vice-President, Barry Shaw, hard at work:
Film Restoration Project
Blackpool Civic Trust joins with Blackpool Council on an exciting project to clean and restore four old reels of film of historical interest. The films record the speeches of past mayors of Blackpool and were found by chance buried in the basement of the Town Hall. They have now been sent away for restoration by specialists.
Photograph of Joan Humble of Blackpool Civic Trust and Carl Carrington of Blackpool Council:
The Blackpool Civic Trust Christmas Tree is in the Festival 21/22 November 2015 in the Derham Lounge of the Winter Gardens. Dozens of trees were entered.
19th November 2015
Members of Blackpool Civic Trust were pleased to visit the Tram Depot at Squires Gate and learn more about the operation of the new trams.
Joan Humble, Chair of Blackpool Civic Trust, said "This is the third visit that BCT members have made to the Tram Depot. We have recruited many new members recently and several had never been inside the tram, so we arranged a new tour. It was a very informative and interesting visit. I would like to thank the Blackpool Transport Services staff who showed us around, answered questions and even let some of our members sit in the driver's seat of one of the trams".
Marton Windmill and the Oxford Hotel.
19th November 2015
Joan Humble, Chair of Blackpool Civic Trust, joined the Mayor of Blackpool, Councillor Peter Callow, to formally unveil a new Blue Heritage Plaque that celebrates the history of the area.
Mrs Humble commented, "I am very pleased that the Mayor agreed to unveil this new Blue Plaque. When Aldi first announced that they were proposing to knock down the Oxford Hotel and the Sofa Bed store to create a new Aldi, I contacted their architect and discussed how best we could record the importance of Oxford Square. Over many months of talks with Blackpool Council, local historians and also local residents we decided on a Blue Plaque and also history boards to display information about the site. I hope that many people will take the time to look at the plaque and the details on the two boards and celebrate the importance of this area to the development of Blackpool".
Below L-R: The Mayor, Cllr Peter Callow; Chair of Civic Trust, Joan Humble; 2 Aldi Staff, Barry McQueen:
Below L-R: Barry McQueen, The Mayor, Cllr Peter Callow; Chair of Civic Trust, Joan Humble:
Planning Seminar for Fylde Civic Societies
18th November 2015
Blackpool Civic Trust has worked with Blackpool Council and Planning Aid to organise a seminar to explain the detail of planning rules and regulations to its members. Civic Trusts and Societies are the main contributors to the planning system and their volunteers spend many hours looking at the details.
Joan Humble, Chairman of Blackpool Civic Trust and Trustee of Civic Voice added; "Blackpool Civic Trust has been commenting on an ever increasing number of planning applications being submitted for work on our listed buildings or in our four conservation areas. I know that the same is also happening in our neighbouring Boroughs. I therefore invited representatives from Fleetwood Civic Society, Lytham St Annes Civic Society and also Poulton Historical and Civic Society to this special seminar.
I must thank Blackpool Borough Council for its assistance and Planning Aid for putting on a very detailed presentation and answering our questions".
Barry Band, "The Ladies of the Threatre".
Blackpool Civic Trust held its annual Robert Evans Mills lecture on Monday 16th November 2015. Robert Evans Mills was born in Oldham in 1891 and went on to lecture on archaeology and history. He died at the age of 59 in 1950 whist living in Blackpool. In his will he left money for an annual lecture to be given by a competent historian on "an aspect of the town's development and history".
Joan Humble, Chair of Blackpool Civic Trust, welcomed this year's lecturer, Barry Band, to the meeting in Blackpool Town Hall.
"Barry Band is a noted expert on the entertainment history of Blackpool. He first came to give the Robert Evans Mills lecture in 1994 and we were very pleased to welcome him back this year. Barry gave a fascinating account of "The Ladies of the Theatre", famous actresses who have performed in Blackpool over the last 60 years.
The Civic Trust was also pleased that the Deputy Mayor, Councillor Tony Brown and the Deputy Mayoress, Mrs Angela Brown, could join us. The Deputy Mayor thanked Barry at the end of his very entertaining lecture".
L-R: Barry Band, Deputy Mayoress Mrs Angela Brown, Deputy Mayor Tony Brown, Joan Humble.
Civic Voice Trustee, Joan Humble, spoke on 12th November 2015 to a meeting of the Lytham St Annes Civic Society about the work of Civic Voice.
"The members of the Lytham St Annes Civic Society asked several questions about Civic voice and we had an interesting discussion about the challenges facing civic societies in the future and also the opportunities".
At the Annual General Meeting and Convention of Civic Voice, the national charity supporting English civic trusts and societies, Blackpool Civic Trust was given the 'Outstanding Contribution Award' as part of the Civic Day 2015 Awards in Bristol.
Blackpool Civic Trust put together a week full of events leading up to National Civic Day on June 20th, 2015. These included a talk by Dick Gillingham entitled 'History of Early Fleetwood', two new town centre Blue Plaque Heritage Tours, a Heritage Quiz night, a Heritage Treasure Hunt, special visits to the Model Village and a 40th Anniversary Afternoon Tea at the Imperial Hotel, where the winner of the Street of the Year was announced.
Chair of Blackpool Civic Trust, Joan Humble, said: 'My husband and I, who were in Bristol representing our members, were thrilled when Blackpool won this prestigious award.
All members of our committee had worked very hard to organise a wonderful week of events but I want to especially praise our Social Secretary, Sharon Sanderson-Roberts, who organised much of what we put on. I would also like to thank the Mayor and Mayoress and the Deputy Mayor and Deputy Mayoress, who supported our events.
Everyone thoroughly enjoyed Civic Day and the busy week leading up to it. We recruited new members and we made sure there was a wide variety of events to take part in.
It was a special pleasure to be able to explain to the Lord Mayor of Bristol, Cllr Clare Campion-Smith, how we celebrate Civic Day here in Blackpool.'
Award photo, L-R: Lord Mayor of Bristol, Cllr Clare Campion-Smith, Joan Humble, Paul Humble, Dr Freddie Gick
New Board of Civic Voice Trustees:
L-R Dr Freddie Gick, Joan Humble, Paul Humble.
Joan speaking at a workshop:
We ask you to nominate places and people for our Annual Awards. Below is a nomination form and we hope that you will look around for new buildings, community groups and environmental work at schools which have impressed you.
The closing date for nominations was 26th October and the judging will take place in November.
The Annual Awards and Dinner will be held on 26th February 2016 at the Pleasure Beach where Blackpool Civic Trust started 40 years ago.
1. Best New Build
2. Best Refurbishment
3. Best Open Space
4. Best Community Group Award
5. Best Shop Front
6. Best Night time Economy
8. Junior School Shield
9. Senior School Shield
10.Best Visitor Attraction
1. Overall quality of design & construction
2. Aesthetic Appeal
3. Respect for streetscene or townscape
6. Best environment project (Schools Only)
NB All buildings or work nominated must have been completed during 2015
Visit to Marton Mere Visitor Centre
Blackpool Civic Trust members visited the newly refurbished Visitor Centre at Marton Mere, where we had an informative talk and a lively Question & Answer Session. We then visited one of the hides dotted around the lake and enjoyed a stroll in the glorious sunny weather around the lake.
Cruise on the Leeds Liverpool Canal
Members of BCT joined Marton Methodist on a very enjoyable canal cruise following the Leeds Liverpool Canal from Colne. After a delicious cream scone tea on board the boat we finished the day with a shopping trip to Boundary Mill.
Blackpool Trams 130th Celebration
The Blackpool Tramway 130th Anniversary was celebrated on the 26th to 27th September 2015 and seems to have been a great success with large crowds, sunny weather and lots of vintage trams. Two of our Executive Committee members - David Evans & Chris Norton - both volunteered their services, helping to make the weekend celebration of Blackpool's heritage a success.
Heritage Open Days Blackpool Town Hall - 10th Sept
Members of Blackpool Civic Trust have escorted visitors around Blackpool Town Hall as part of this year's Heritage Open Days.
Photo: Christine Lambe, Deputy Mayoress Angela Brown, Deputy Mayor Cllr Tony Brown, Joan Humble, Jean Mildren
Joan Humble, Chair of Blackpool Civic Trust, said "We were pleased to see so many members of the public enjoy tours of the Town Hall on Thursday 10th September and then groups of school children on Friday 11th September".
The events were supported by the Mayor and Mayoress of Blackpool and also the Deputy Mayor and Deputy Mayoress. Their presence made the guided tours even more special for our visitors.
Join Blackpool Civic Trust
Illuminasia entry at a reduced price of £5 each for the rest of 2015, on production of your current Blackpool Civic Trust Membership Card.
There was an excellent turn-out for the visit to Little Marton Windmill. Both Joan, our Chairman, and Shirley Matthews gave short talks before the buffet, which was followed by a guided tour of the windmill. Our thanks to the Friends of Little Marton Windmill for the buffet and tour. Thanks also to Sharon Sanderson-Roberts and Shirley for organising an enjoyable and successful event.
There was an excellent turnout of members for a guided tour of Layton Cemetery on Monday 3rd August. We were shown some of the graves of those who had made singular contributions in various ways to the development of Blackpool over many years.
Visits to Layton Cemetery, Little Marton Windmill, Boundary Mill with Canal Cruise, Ulverston Dickensian Christmas Festival are on our Meetings and Events page. Click here
Since recommencing work on the Burmantofts tiles in June, we have been making truly excellent progress. We are concentrating our efforts on what would have been the hottest room of the Turkish baths and have now completely uncovered the lower part of the tiled walls. We have also uncovered enough of the frieze at the top of the walls to appreciate how beautiful it is and how well preserved.
This is an exciting project with plenty more discoveries to be made. If you can spare an hour or so and fancy trying your hand at a bit of restoration then please contact David Evans, our Project Officer ( 352824), and come along and join us. There are different kinds of work to suit everybody. You don't need any particular skills or tools, just patience and enthusiasm. You do, however, have to be a member of Blackpool Civic Trust. We meet at the Imperial Hotel the third week of every month, Monday to Thursday.
Joan is seen here with Ian Harvey, Executive Director of Civic Voice. In the background can be seen one of the judges, Sophia de Sousa. Joan helped with the organisation on the day, while Paul took photographs of the winners, etc. The overall and very worthy winner was Gloucester Services Northbound. For further details see www.civicvoice.org.uk
Members of Blackpool Civic Trust supported Claremont Gala on Saturday 11th July. Chairman, Joan Humble, joined the parade with Town Crier, Barry McQueen, local MP, Paul Maynard and Claremont Councillors, Ivan Taylor and Lynn Williams.
Members of the Trust had a stall on Claremont Park and enjoyed the sunshine, stalls, dog show and karate display.
Paige Langford was Crowned Rose Queen by Joan Humble, Chairman of Blackpool Civic Trust.
Blackpool Civic Trust supported Grange Park's "Bit of a Do" with a stall at the City Learning Centre. Our thanks to Sharon for organising and setting up the stall and Christine and Heather for helping.
Left to Right: Heather, Christine, Joan.
Armed Forces Day, 27th July 2015
Blackpool Civic Trust was pleased to join Armed Forces Day celebrations on St John's Square. Crowds visited the many stall and displays and enjoyed the sunshine, singers and bands. Joan Humble said that we had a very successful and enjoyable day.
Blackpool Civic Week and Civic Day 2015
Saturday 20th June 2015
Blackpool Civic Trust held a very successful afternoon cream tea at the Imperial Hotel to celebrate our fortieth anniversary. We were pleased to be joined by the Deputy Mayor, Cllr Tony Brown and Deputy Mayoress, Mrs Brown. The event began with the announcement of the winner of our Best Kept Street of the Year competition. The Deputy Mayor presented the Rose Bowl to Councillors Graham Caine and John Jones, which they will keep for one year. A street sign will be erected on the road itself - St Chad's - and representatives of the residents attended the presentation to receive the award.
This was a fitting conclusion to the Civic Trust's week-long celebrations of the National Civic Day, especially as, together with our Anniversary Dinner in February, it celebrated forty years of fostering and promoting civic pride in Blackpool.
Representatives of St Chad's are seen here with (L to R): Cllr Graham Caine, Joan, Deputy Mayoress, Mrs Brown, Deputy Mayor, Tony Brown, Cllr John Jones (far right).
Our Civic Week got off to a very successful start, with two well-attended guided tours of the blue plaques in the town centre. Shown here is the morning tour, which attracted 20 people, two of whom joined the Civic Trust on the spot! Photo below:
As part of its Civic Week celebrations, Blackpool Civic Trust held a Treasure Hunt with a strong heritage theme. It started and finished at the Town Hall:
Our Quiz Night proved highly popular, with over 70 members and guests taking part. We were especially pleased that the Mayor Cllr Peter Callow and Mayoress Cllr Maxine Callow attended the event and joined in the fun. The winner's prize of £20 was donated to the Mayor's charity, which was only fitting since the Mayor and Mayoress were part of the winning team! Thanks to everyone who supported this event and helped to make it such a success, with special thanks to our Quiz Masters, Chris Norton and Andrew Sage and also our Social Secretary, Sharon Sanderson-Roberts and her team.
Joan Humble (Chair), Mayor Cllr Peter Callow, Mayoress Cllr Maxine Callow, Elaine Smith MBE, Barry Shaw
St Stephen's on the Cliffs Parish Centre - Heritage Quiz
Mayor of Blackpool Councillor Peter Callow and Mayoress Councillor Maxine Callow attended the Heritage Quiz.
Corporate member, The Model Village, joined in our Civic Week celebrations by offering members free entry on Friday. Undaunted by the cold, grey day members, sometimes accompanied by grandchildren, took advantage of this kind offer. We all had a good time exploring the Model Village with quiz sheet or camera in hand. Our thanks to the Model Village for their support and generosity.
Lytham St Anne's Civic Society visit the Imperial Hotel Blackpool
Lytham and St Annes Civic Society were most interested in seeing for themselves what we in Blackpool having been getting up to in the Imperial Hotel, specifically the former Turkish Baths.
They took a lively interest in the restoration work our members have been painstakingly carrying out over the past year and asked many questions. They were particularly impressed by how much had been achieved using only wooden and plastic implements.
Opening the Outstanding Buildings of the Fylde Exhibition at Fleetwood Marine Hall. On until 29th June don't miss it, read more
War Memorials On-line, Blackpool Civic Trust is involved in activity to preserve WW1 War Memorials. Read more click here.
Fri 19th June
"The Biggest Little Village in Lancashire"
Blackpool Model Village on East Park Drive are offering members of the Blackpool Civic Trust free entry on Friday 19th June as part of our week of the Civic Celebrations, a big, big thank to Anita and Michael.
To gain the free entry you must show your current Blackpool Civic Trust Membership Card.
Once you have been around the village you can then have a mosy around the gift shop, light refreshments are also available.
And dont forget Anita's Ice Cream Parlour which serve amazing ice cream, yum, yum.
The Blackpool Civic Trust are arranging a tour of the Town Centre Blue Plaques as part of the Civic Week Celebrations.
The tour will take place on Tuesday 16th June 2015 at 10am and 1pm.
If you are interested in going on either of the tours please email me by return or ring me on 01253 315162.
Please note there is no charge to go on the tour and non members can also come along, if you know anyone that might be interested please let them know.
The quiz is being held at St Stephen on the Cliffs Parish Centre on Wednesday 17th June at 6.45pm.
Ticket cost is £5 per person which includes entrance to the quiz, hot pot, mushy peas, red cabbage, beetroot, chutney and dessert which will include choclate cake, victoria sponge and sherry trifle. A vegetarian option will be available but must be pre ordered.
On the night there will be a licensed bar and we will be holding a raffle.
In addition, the quiz night is open to non members of the Blackpool Civic Trust so if you know anyone that might be interested please let them know
Come along and join in with the Blackpool Town Centre Treasure Hunt on Thursday 18th June you can start the treasure hunt any time between 2pm and 3pm, look high, look low, there will be clues all over.
Entry is free for the treasure hunt and there will be a prize for the winner.
If you are interested please email me by return or ring me on 01253 315162.
Non members can also come along, if you know anyone that might be interested please let them know.
Celebrate Civic Day by having an Afternoon Tea at the Imperial Hotel on Saturday 20th June, 1.30pm
The cost of the afternoon tea is £7.50 per person which includes Finger Sandwiches, Eton Mess, Scones, Jam & Cream, Various Cakes and Fancies together with Tea & Coffee.
We are offering tickets to non members of the Blackpool Civic Trust at a cost of £10.00 per person, so if you know anyone that might be interested please let them know.
One the day we will also be holding a raffle and having a tombola.
Joint Photographic Exhibition reopens
Last year in the run up to Civic Day, Blackpool Civic Trust joined Fleetwood and the Lytham St Annes Civic Societies to produce a photographic exhibition of outstanding Fylde Coast buildings.
It was displayed in Lytham throughout June.
This year the photographs (on large, beautifully printed boards) have been brought together again and are displayed in the Marine Hall in Fleetwood. The exhibition is free and open daily until the 29th of June from 10.30 to 4pm.
Joan, Chair of Blackpool Civic Trust, said how pleased she was to be working with the Civic Societies of Fleetwood and Lytham St Annes. "It is especially pleasing", she added, "that the photographs are in the Marine Hall, which is celebrating its 80th birthday."
Members of the Blackpool Civic Trust have been invited to attend the Blackpool Pride Festival Ball Dinner on Sunday 7th June 2015 at 7pm at the Sands Venue.
Tickets cost £30.00 each, the price includes the drinks reception, meal and a full evening of entertainment.
War Memorials On-line
Blackpool Civic Trust is involved in seeking, surveying and promoting the care of local WW1 war memorials. These can take many forms and are often ignored. Civic Voice the national civic society has run a series of workshops to advise how to do this. Find out more about it on the video below and look at the link to War Memorials On-line. If you're interested please talk to us:
North-West Association of Civic Trusts & Societies
Six members of Blackpool Civic Trust attended a day of events in Salford on Saturday, 28th March organised by the North-West Association of Civic Trusts & Societies. The day began with a tour of the Media Centre by two BBC staff. We enjoyed learning how radio and TV. programmes are made, ranging from news to Blue Peter. The afternoon session in the nearby Imperial War Museum in Salford was particularly interesting in explaining to us how to run a project on listing war memorials, something we will explore further.
REGEN - Liverpool
Joan Humble was invited by Civic Voice to speak at the UK Regeneration Industry event held in Liverpool last week. She talked about the Civic Voice's manifesto entitled "Localism for Real"; her talk sparked off a lively and interesting discussion.
Committee Members Retiring
At the AGM 3 long standing committee members retired and were given presentations for their long term contributions by the Chairman Joan Humble. Left to Right: Betty Bradford, Joan Humble, Jean Brookhouse, Jean Mildren.
Blue Plaque for Little Marton Windmill
Joan Humble, Chairman of Blackpool Civic Trust welcomed the unveiling of a Blue Heritage Plaque at Little Marton Windmill on 2nd March 2015.
Mrs Humble added; "I was pleased to work with the Friends of Little Marton Windmill and with Blackpool Council to create this plaque to celebrate the history of the Mill and its place as an important landmark in Blackpool.
Blackpool Civic Trust contributed to the cost and looks forward to continuing its involvement with the Friends group."
Blackpool Civic Trust Awards Ceremony
27th February 2015 at Viva!
Best Blackpool buildings, environment, night life and more. Click here for more
Members of the Civic Trust visited the newly-built Harbour mental health in-patient unit prior to it opening on 10th March 2015. As this was such a popular and heavily over-subscribed visit, there were two separate groups of members all of whom were impressed by the range and quality of facilities. The Harbour will serve Lancashire, providing in-patient care for individuals with mental issues, including dementia.
130yrs of Blackpool Trams - Blackpool Heritage Tram Tours announce their 2015 tours
Celebrate 130yrs of Blackpool Trams. The 2015 heritage tram schedule includes regular weekend service, mid-week dining service and special events.
Comrades Club awarded Asset of Community Value Status
The Chairman of Blackpool Civic Trust and Civic Voice Trustee, Joan Humble, today welcomed the news that the first application by Blackpool Civic Trust to register an Asset of Community Value has been approved.
Mrs Humble said; "This is only the second registration of an ACV in Blackpool and the first proposed by Blackpool Civic Trust. We are that Community Asset status is granted to the Comrades Club as we commemorate the First World War. ".
The Localism Act 2011's Community Right to Bid allows community groups to nominate land and buildings Assets of Community Value(ACVs) to allow them more control over their future use. An ACV listing gives local people an opportunity to bid for the asset if the owner decides to sell, as this usually triggers a six-month moratorium, during which time the asset cannot be sold except to a community bidder.
After the First World War (the Great War) former servicemen set up clubs across the nation to be known as Comrades of the Great War Clubs. The club is one of the survivors of that movement and now known simply as "The Comrades"
Joan Humble added "We hope that this will be the first of many ACVs in Blackpool. Having worked hard with Blackpool Council to register 300 Locally Listed Heritage Buildings, we want to use our 40th Anniversary Year to campaign for many more local premises to gain recognition as Assets of Community Value".
Freddie finished by saying "I would now encourage individuals across England to take inspiration from Blackpool Civic Trust and to consider fighting to give buildings you love greater protection from developers by getting them registered either as Local Heritage Assets or as an Asset of Community Value". (January 2015)
Tim Pipe, Joan Humble (Chair of Blackpool Civic Trust), Freddie Gick (Chair of Civic Voice) and Steve Greenwood.Tim and Steve are from the Comrades Club
Visit to Christ the King Primary School
Members of Blackpool Civic Trust recently visited the newly re-built Christ the King Primary School and were shown around by Headteacher, Mrs Sarah Smith.
The Civic Trust Chair, Joan Humble, said that members were very impressed with the facilities in the new building. She added:
"The design and attention to detail in the new school were very impressive. The staff were clearly enthusiastic about the new facilities and how they could be used to enhance the pupils' education."
Members of Blackpool Civic Trust with Head Teacher, Mrs Sarah Smith, Christ the King Primary School (at the back, far right).
Joan Humble, Chairman of Blackpool Civic Trust, in the small"Intervention Room
Hot Pot Supper and Christmas Carols, December Meeting
By tradition the December Members meeting is largely given over to a hot-pot supper and Christmas carols led by the Salvation Army's excellent brass band. This year, however, was a little different. The hot-pot supper was as good as ever and so, too, was the brass band. But our Vice-President, Cllr David Owen, had a few surprises up his sleeve.
David is a trustee of a bequest set up for charitable purposes and he made four very generous financial contributions over the course of the evening. Two donations of £500 each were made to The Friends of Stanley Park and the Civic Trust itself. But the best was saved to last. Just before the final carol David presented Major Paul Fisher with a cheque for £1000 and with a second cheque of £1000, specifically, to fund the Salvation's Army's Bridge Project here in Blackpool. It was a very fitting end to an evening of celebration.
To read news from past years please visit our News Archive. Click here.
A Blackpool Heritage Tram stop.
The Grade II* listed Grand Theatre, Blackpool. More beautiful inside would you believe!