Blackpool Civic Trust

News Archive 2017

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Christmas Meeting and Carol Singing December 2017


Our traditional  December meeting with the Salvation Army brass band, carols and a hotpot supper was a great success. The new venue of St John's Parish Church provided a very sympathetic setting for the occasion. The Salvation Army brass band always proves popular with our members but this year was quite special. Our Vice-President, Cllr David Owen, who administers some charitable legacies, chose the Salvation Army as one of this year's recipients. He presented Major Sandra with a cheque for ?2,500 to support and further the very important work the Salvation Army does in Blackpool.

Blackpool Civic Trust Christmas Meeting

Blackpool Civic Trust Christmas Meeting

Blackpool Civic Trust Christmas Meeting

Blackpool Civic Trust Christmas Meeting


Christmas Coach Trip

Our Treasurer Heather O Hara has vert kindly organised our Christmas Coach Trip, this year we are heading to the Leeds German Christmas Markets, with an option of going to the Leeds Armouries.

The trip is on the 7th December and it will cost £12.00, we will be leaving Blackpool at approximately 9am and returning at approximately 6pm.

If you wish to go on the trip then please send me and email by return or ring me on 01253 315162 or 07400611679

Social Secretary & Membership Officer
Blackpool Civic Trust

Professor Vanessa Toulmin gives the annual Robert Evans Mills Memorial Lecture

The November meeting of Blackpool Civic Trust is a special lecture held in the memory of Robert Evans Mills who was born in Oldham in 1891 but died in Blackpool in 1950. He left money in his will for an annual lecture to be given in his memory by a "competent historian" on "an aspect of the town's development and history ".

This year we were very pleased when Professor Vanessa Toulmin accepted our invitation to give the lecture. She spoke about "Art and Design at Blackpool Pleasure Beach", an area in which she is an expert, having written a book about Blackpool Pleasure Beach. The meeting took place in the Council Chamber at Blackpool Town Hall and was very well attended. We were joined by the Mayor of Blackpool, Coun. Ian Coleman, who thanked Professor Toulmin for her excellent and informative lecture.

Photograph left to right: Robert Owen of Blackpool Pleasure Beach, The Mayor, Councillor Ian Coleman, Joan Humble the Chair of Blackpool Civic Trust and Professor Vanessa Toulmin the guest speaker.

Blackpool Civic Trust with Professor Vanessa Toulmin guest speaker


Blackpool Civic Trust win National Award

At the AGM and Convention of Civic Voice in Wakefield on 21st October, Blackpool Civic Trust won a prestigious national award. Blackpool Civic Trust was given the Marsh Christian Trust Award for Civic Societies. The Marsh Christian Trust gives annual awards to highlight the outstanding commitment and hard work of individuals and groups who selflessly dedicate their energies to improving people?s lives and the world we live in.

The Marsh Christian Trust said to the civic trust that ?Your contribution to the Civic movement, especially the variety of activities you organise and the Award scheme you have set up to recognise civic achievement in your local area, are exceptional and were recognised by the judging panel as outstanding.? They have presented a certificate and also a cheque for ?1000 to Blackpool Civic Trust.

Joan Humble, Chair of Blackpool Civic Trust, said ?Those members of Blackpool Civic Trust who attended the Civic Voice AGM and Convention were very pleased to hear the announcement that we had won this prestigious award. It is independently decided by the Marsh Christian Trust and so very special to us all. As Chair of Blackpool Civic Trust and also Chair of Civic Voice, it was a huge honour to stand in front of so many other civic societies gathered in Wakefield and be told we had been given this award. We work very hard on numerous projects to improve Blackpool, protect our heritage and also support good new developments in the town. We shall now consider how best to invest the money we have been given and continue to support our community?.

Blackpool Civic Trust win the Marsh Award 2017 at the Civic Voice AGM in Wakefield


To All Members of Blackpool Civic Trust A Visit to Great Harwood Lancashire

Saturday 28th of October 2017
10.30am – 4.30pm

Kathy Fishwick, the Chair of NWACTS has sent an invitation to members of Blackpool Civic Trust to visit a property that has been rescued. . This group has each year nominated a property as a "Building at Risk" and invited members to come along and learn more about it. This time they have chosen one where they want us to see how it has actually been rescued. Good news instead of bad.
The programme for the visit is as follows:
10:30am;  Meeting at Bank Mill Community Centre, Church Street, Great Harwood BB67NF. There will be an introduction by Great Harwood Civic Society, followed by a general discussion about North West ACTS.

1pm;  Free time to have lunch and look around Great Harwood.

3pm;  Meet at Churchfield House which was at risk but has been restored by the local community and volunteer effort. They will explain how they saved the building.

This will be followed by afternoon tea for which they are charging £5

Please contact Carole Neale if you will be attending the event by the 23rd of October.

Blackpool Museum Project has invited members of Blackpool Civic Trust to the event detailed below.

Wednesday 25 October, Local and Family History Centre at Queen Street Library, 13.30 – 5pm

This event is a general beginners’ guide to using historical resources such as newspapers, maps, photographs, archives, postcards and much more in the Local and Family History Centre. Supported by experienced staff you will be the investigator and will learn how to research topics like The Great Wheel and find out more about the centre and its special collections.
This session is not aimed at answering specific genealogical enquiries but is designed to give you the skills to do your own research in the centre. It is quite intense so there will be a break in the middle for tea and coffee.




Blackpool Heritage Tram Tour 5th October 2017

We had a great night out on the trams with the splendid volunteer tram crew.

Blackpool Heritage Tram Tour 5th October 2017

Blackpool Heritage Tram Tour 5th October 2017


Heritage Tram Restoration Project - October

Blackpool Civic Trust volunteers are working the first and last Wednesday of each month to help restore the Boat Tram 227. More volunteers are welcome. Please contact us for details.

Blackpool Civic Trust Heritage Tram Project

Macmillan Coffee Morning Saturday 30th September 10 -12noon

Blackpool Civic Trust will be holding their Macmillan Coffee Morning at St Stephen on Cliffs Parish Centre together with St Stephen on Cliffs New to You Pop Up Boutique on Saturday 30th September 10am till 12, as well as the church stalls, we will be holding a raffle, tombola, craft stall and cake stall. Tea, Coffee and biscuits only 50p
 All are very welcome - Free Entry
For more info contact 07400611679 or


St Stephens on the Cliffs, Holmfield Road, Blackpool FY2 9RG


Blackpool Civic Trust Awards for 2017

The nomination forms for best school environmental project and best of Blackpool have been sent out and can be downloaded on our website. Please return them with your nominations by 31st December 2017.

The awards ceremony will be held in 2018 at Viva.

Click here to visit the Awards Page


The Special Award last year went to The Carers Centre at Beaverbrook House which was the subject of a national television show.

Blackpool Civic Trust Awards Special Award for 2016


Visit to Queen's Park Blackpool 27th September 2017

Following demolition of the high rise apartments at Queen's Park we had a very interesting visit to inspect the completed 1st phase of the new housing development. Councillor Christine Wright who arranged the visit is also a member of Blackpool Civic Trust.  Andrew Foot of Blackpool Council and John Donnellon of Blackpool Coastal Housing gave us a highly instructive talk on the background to the housing development before showing us around.

We were very impressed by what we saw. The project is a credit to the Town Council and we greatly look forward to seeing the 2nd phase of the development when it is completed.

visit to Queens Park Phae 1 Blackpool

Queens Park Phae 1 Blackpool


Heritage Open Days Tours of the Town Hall - 9th Sept 2017

As part of Heritage Open Days on the Fylde, Blackpool Civic Trust conducted tours for local schools on the Friday and ran tours for the public on Saturday.

Over one hundred members of the public, including visitors from London and Aberdeen, were shown around our splendid Town Hall. They clearly found the experience both enjoyable and instructive, judging by the very positive feedback we received.

Many thanks to our enthusiastic volunteers who made the two days so successful, with particular thanks to the Mayor and Deputy Mayor for their valuable support.
Here's looking forward to next year!

Heritage Open Days Tours of the Town Hall - 9th Sept 2017

Heritage Open Days Tours of the Town Hall - 9th Sept 2017

Heritage Open Days Tours of the Town Hall - 9th Sept 2017


Heritage Tram Component Project - August

The new project at Rigby Road to restore parts of vintage trams (not a whole tram) is now up and running. Blackpool Civic Trust volunteer, John Odenwalder, is seen here stripping down an old pantograph and preparing it for painting.

If you are  interested in learning more about the project or are thinking about volunteering please contact our Chair, Joan, for more information. Joan’s email address is:

The photograph below and on our Projects page were taken by another volunteer, Stan Harrison.

Blackpool Civic Trust - Heritage Tram Component project 2017


Heritage Open Days 2017 - Blackpool Town Hall - Saturday 9th Sept 2017

Blackpool Civic Trust will be hosting the opening of Blackpool Town Hall on Saturday 9th September 2017 between 9.30am and 2.30pm. Guides will explain the history and significance of the building.

Full wheelchair access. No booking required.

Blackpool Civic Trust Guided Tour of the Town Hall Heritage Open Days

To download the full leaflet of Blackpool & The Fylde Coast Heritage Open Days please click here.



Proposed Conservation Area from Gynn Square to the Castle Casino - August 2017


We are starting a very exciting project to create a new conservation area on the promenade from Gynn Square to the Castle Casino ( Genting Club). Also to be included are The Collonades from Gynn Square to the Metropole Hotel.


A well attended and positive meeting took place at the Savoy Hotel on 4th August at 10am to launch the proposal.  

Read more on our Projects Page

Launch meeting of the proposed new conservation area in Blackpool


Public Advisory Meeting about the electrification of the Rail Line into Blackpool

In late 2017/early 2018 Blackpool North will have its platforms re-aligned and the track to Preston will be electrified. This also effects the line to Blackpool South as it is proposed to close the route from Preston for a few months. Network Rail will declare their plans on:

Tuesday 29 August 14:00-18:00 at Blackpool North station, Talbot Road, FY1 3AZ

Read more on Network Rail's website

Blackpool Carnival 2017

The Civic Trust had a great day in the Blackpool Carnival on Sunday the 23rd July.  It was the first for some years.  The sun shone, there were good crowds, lots of colourful costumes, music and non-stop, dancing.   As the sun shone we paraded our banners in the procession and different groups took photos with the crowd adding to the friendly happiness of the event.

Tom Metcalf from one of our Corporate Members, Little Touches, decided it was time that Blackpool had a carnival again and set about organising it.  Given how successful it was let’s hope Tom repeats it again next year.  If he does we’ll be there.

Members may recall the excellent talk given by Tony Sharkey last year on the extremely impressive large Blackpool Carnivals in the 1920s.  It’s good to see Blackpool has not forgotten its past.

Blackpool Civic Trust at Blackpool Carnival 2017

Blackpool Civic Trust at Blackpool Carnival 2017

Blackpool Civic Trust at Blackpool Carnival 2017

Blackpool Civic Trust at Blackpool Carnival 2017


Stanley Park 90th Summer Celebration

On the 8th July a ceremony was held where the Earl of Derby opened the park gates with a golden key as his great grandfather had done 90years ago at the opening of the park. Local Civic Dignitaries and several schools paraded, made speeches and performed on the bandstand.

Three members of Blackpool Civic Trust were significant in the parade. Edith Wilkinson who is 97 and attended the opening of the park was accompanied by her daughter Jean Sanderson and the Chairman of Blackpool Civic Trust, Joan Humble.

90th Summer of Stanley Park



Visit to Carleton Crematorium Thursday 6th July 2017

Members beginning to arrive outside the Crematorium.

Blackpool Civic Trust visit to Carleton Crematorium Thursday 6th July 2017

The front of the building

Blackpool Civic Trust visit to Carleton Crematorium Thursday 6th July 2017

The new outer doors and windows

Blackpool Civic Trust visit to Carleton Crematorium Thursday 6th July 2017

A carved acorn leaf salvaged from the former large cross that was taken down some time ago. The carving of the acorn leaf is one of a pair.

Blackpool Civic Trust visit to Carleton Crematorium Thursday 6th July 2017


Civic Day is a national celebration of civic pride. It is a day when communities across the country say "we care about where we live".

Civic Voice, the national body for Civic Societies

Blackpool Civic Week - 12th to 17th June 2017

Blackpool Civic Trust holds a series of events in the week before Civic Day, which is celebrated throughout England. Its members and other guests begin the week with a Heritage Tram Tour. See the full list below.

Click here to see photos of the events

Blackpool Civic Week 2017


Blackpool Pride Festival 2017

Blackpool Civic Trust had a stall at the Winter Gardens on Saturday 10th June. Photograph of Joan and Jack.

Blackpool Pride Festival 2017


Blackpool War Memorial upgraded to Grade II* listed


O the 9th June 2017 Blackpool War Memorial was upgrade from listed building Grade II to Grade II*. The upgrade was due to the high-quality bronze sculptural plaques by Gilbert Ledward, a rare example of women on a war memorial and an extremely rare depiction of a fallen German combatant.


Blackpool Civic Trust Awards for 2016

The Awards for 2016 were presented on April 28th 2017 in the Washington Suite at the Imperial Hotel.

Click Here to see our full text report with photos


Click here to see our Flickr Album with more photos and little text


Blackpool Civic Trust Awards  28th April 2017



Cleaning the Council's Silverware

Blackpool Civic Trust undertook to clean the Council's silverware in time for the forthcoming Mayor Making.

Cleaning Blackpool Council's silverware


Imperial Tile Project March Dates

Monday 20th March to Thursday 23rd March 9.30am to 3.30pm.

Volunteers please contact Sharon



Annual Awards Dinner and Nominations

We are also busy making preparations for the Annual Awards and Dinner.

The Awards for 2016 will be presented on April 28th 2017 in the Washington Suite at the Imperial Hotel.

We have kept the ticket price at £30:00 each and Sharon is now selling them. Please come and join us for this very special event.

Read about the Awards ceremony



Stay Blackpool Information Show

Blackpool Civic Trust were at the Stay Blackpool Information Show at Blackpool Winter Gardens on the 30th March 2017. Joan, Heather & Sharon were there.


Blackpool Civic Trust at the Stay Blackpool Information Show March 2017 Blackpool Winter Gardens





Imperial Hotel - Turkish Baths Tiles Project - Janaury 2017 Update

We continue to make very good progress on uncovering and reclaiming the wonderful Burmantofts tiles in the former Turkish Baths at the Imperial Hotel. We are very pleased that three more of our members have volunteered their services and recently joined our dedicated team.Imperial Hotel Blackpool Turkish Baths - Blackpool Civic Trust - Jan 2017

This week we completed a section of the ceiling in the 'cooling room' and have now begun “steaming” and stripping one of the big beams running the entire length of the room (approximately 20 feet). This is beautifully decorated and it seems extraordinary that anyone could have decided to conceal its beauty under a coat of paint! While two members of the team have been working on the ceiling, others, including our new volunteers, have been doing equally important work, removing thick plaster from tiles and from the superb, highly ornate friezes decorating three of the four walls. In addition, we have been stripping paint from fluted columns, tiled doorways and other decorative features.

Imperial Hotel Blackpool Turkish Baths - Blackpool Civic Trust - Jan 2017

Some months ago we completed work on all tiled surfaces in the 'hot' room of the Turkish baths. Although most of the tiles were in good to excellent condition, we discovered that the original mosaic floor (overlaid with asphalt) requires specialist attention owing to historic damage.

This leaves the third room. Most of the thick plaster has been removed from the walls, revealing quite extensive historic damage, though many individual tiles are in good condition.

This project has excited a lot of interest. The author of 'Victorian Turkish Baths', Malcolm Shifrin, visited the Imperial before Christmas and was extremely impressed by our painstaking work. A private collector of Burmantofts tiles also visited the Turkish Baths and echoed Mr Shifrin’s sentiments.

The Imperial Hotel is celebrating its 150th Anniversary this year and has issued a presentational pack of postcards. We are delighted that one of those eight postcards celebrates the work we have carried out on the former Turkish Baths.

Imperial Hotel Blackpool Turkish Baths - Blackpool Civic Trust - Jan 2017

Visit to the Mayor's Parlour 14th January 2017

Committee members were invited by the Mayor of Blackpool, Cllr Kath Rowson, to join her and the Mayoress, Joan Goldin, in the Mayor’s Parlour in Blackpool Town Hall. Chair of Blackpool Civic Trust, Joan Humble, said how pleased committee members were to join the Mayor, Mayoress and other guests at this special event. A raffle was held to raise funds for the Trinity Hospice, which has been chosen this year by the Mayor as being particularly deserving of support for its outstanding and commendable work.

Visit with the Mayor of Blackpool



Imperial Hotel Turkish Bath Tiles Project 2017

We will be working on the Imperial Hotel Turkish Bath Tiles Restoration next week, commencing Monday 16th January. We are returning to our normal schedule, i.e. Monday to Thursday inclusive, from 9.30 am. to 4 pm. Members can slot into any of these sessions or part-sessions to work at their own pace and at hours to suit them. All members are welcome.


St Stephens on the Cliffs Performing Arts Service

Saint Stephen on the Cliffs Church invite Blackpool Civic Trust Members to a Service to recognise the contribution of the performing arts to this town. Saint Stephens is particularly important in this regard as it features the Actors Chapel, believed to be one of only two in the world.

The Service will be held at 3pm on Sunday 15th January 2017, the Preacher will be the Venerable Michael Everitt, Archdeacon of Lancaster and it will be followed by light refreshments, an opportunity to tour the church and to find out more about the work of the Friends and become a member.

Our Good Work in the Gazette - Imperial Tiles Project

The Evening Gazette of 5th January published an article about our project at the Imperial Hotel.

'Painstakingly scraping away layers of solid plaster more than an inch thick is not for the faint-hearted. But this is the task dedicated members of Blackpool Civic Trust have set themselves after discovering a heritage gem lying forgotten in the basement of one of the town’s most historic hotels.'

Read more at:


Lancashire Local History Federation

Blackpool Civic Trust have joined as members of the above group and we offer invitations to our members to attend their talks and courses. The next one is Saturday 18th February 2017 at Preston Masonic Hall entitled 'Toil and Strife: Working Conditions in the North West'. Members will have received an e-mail with booking details.

Blackpool Civic Trust has a new logo - November

Blackpool Civic Trust logo November 2016


For the full news archive click here

Grand Theatre Blackpool

The Grade II* listed Grand Theatre, Blackpool. More beautiful inside would you believe!

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