Back to its old self...

The revamped exterior of Abingdon Street Market in Blackpool.

The revamped exterior of Abingdon Street Market in Blackpool.

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BLACKPOOL’S historic Abingdon Street Market will be officially re-launched on Saturday following a £200,000 refurbishment.

Work has been carried out over the last three months to restore the mock Tudor frontage on the building which has been a market hall since 1928.

Blackpool Mayor Coun Sylvia Taylor will officially unveil the new look retail centre at 12.30pm.

The work was funded with the help of a grant from Townscape Heritage Initiative through Blackpool Council and the Heritage Lottery Fund.

David Donkin, associate director for Town Centre Securities Plc which owns and operates the market, told The Gazette: “It’s great to see this phase of work complete which significantly improves the look of the market and makes this part of Abingdon Street more attractive.

“We are committed to up-grading this important and historic market hall and will continue to invest in this busy town centre market.”

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Market manager Bob Littlewood added: “The Abingdon Street Market is a thriving hub of activity popular with locals and tourists.

“We offer a traditional market with a range of stalls which appeals to those who want an alternative to supermarkets and shops in the centre of the town.”

Celebrations on Saturday will include street entertainment between 10am and 2pm, which will be linked to the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.

Work began earlier this year on the refurbishment which follows other investment in that part of the town centre including the £3m creation of St John’s Square.

Changes

Other changes have seen the opening of a Co-op store on the corner of Abingdon Street and Birley Street.

The market, which boasts 60 stalls, has remained open to shoppers throughout the refurbishment.

Built originally as the town’s police station in 1862 by TH Smith, the main contractor for parts of the Winter Gardens, the market building originally included offices, four shops and a builders yard to the rear. It was not until 1928, with the construction of the main hall with its Belfast truss roof, the building became a market hall.

Anyone interested in renting a stall can contact Mr Littlewood on (01253) 291874.

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