Call to Celebrate Blackpool’s Heritage

With the news of a new Morecambe and Wise sculpture heading to the Fylde Coast and housed in Blackpool Winter Gardens it will be perfectly placed to compliment the forthcoming museum housed in the same building.

The exciting Blackpool Museum Project is throwing open its doors and holding a talk tomorrow at St Johns Church in Blackpool Town Centre. It runs from 11am  until 4pm and is open to everyone and be by a number of talks and insights by local performance legends with an insight into the the newest plans for the proposed museum to be built in the Winter Gardens Pavilion Theatre.

Blackpool Museum Project  was set up in 2015, a new venture and tasked to develop plans for a museum and visitor attraction based inside the Winter Gardens in Blackpool. The project has been busy collating stories and investigating the rich history of Blackpool whilst looking to submit its final plans to the Heritage Lottery Fund with an opening date 2020.

The drop in day this Thursday the 29 of September will also include free talks, film shows and refreshments throughout the day including an hour long presentation by Blackpool based entertainment producer Duggie Chapman on The Golden Age of Variety.

The Museum team are working towards building a network of retired and current performers living in Blackpool and the Fylde to support its development and attend future events celebrating Blackpool’s entertainment heritage. They are also keen to hear from the relatives of past performers who may have artefacts and stories that could be showcased in the new Museum. This exciting Museum project aims to demonstrate the “bones” of what Blackpool is built on with entertainment and performance being the heart of our northern town held in warm regard by many.

Belinda Betts, Project Director of Blackpool Museum Project, said: “The museum will celebrate Blackpool’s pivotal role in shaping popular entertainment in Britain over the last 150 years. The venues and shows are obviously central to this story but it was the performers who were the real stars. Their stories and experiences are vital if we are to create a display that reflects the rich diversity of talent that made Blackpool the northern home of variety. . If you would like to contribute to our stories, collections and knowledge then I urge you to come along on the 29 September or contact the Museum team.”

Mark Raffles, professional magician based in Blackpool, who is supporting the museum said: “I can’t think of a better place to celebrate the glorious and glamorous world of show business than the Winter Gardens where the new museum is to be based. I have pledged by my portrait to the Museum and produced a digital story film about my career which will be screened on the 29 September.

The Museum is looking to build on Blackpool’s existing heritage collections and are also on the lookout for costumes, props, and other items to display in the Museum. Items and collections will accompany a digital story collection of short films produced with entertainers telling an aspect of their life story. This project was piloted in February and the Museum is now looking for more people to take part.

For more information visit the Blackpool Museum website at www.blackpoolmuseum.com/creating-digital-stories

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