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Conference return hailed

Shadow Health Secretary Andy Burnham at the North West Labour annual conference, held at Blackpool's Imperial Hotel.

Shadow Health Secretary Andy Burnham at the North West Labour annual conference, held at Blackpool's Imperial Hotel.

Political activists and tourism bosses alike have welcomed the news the North West Labour Party will be returning to Blackpool for its annual conference this year.

The two-day event, to be held at the resort’s Imperial Hotel this November, is expected to bring a thousand delegates and visitors to the town for the fourth consecutive year.

The promenade hotel is considered by many as the heartland of British party politics, having hosted every British Prime Minister since Winston Churchill.

Now it is hoped the North West conference will be the precursor to the main party conference returning to the resort.

James Sorah, a Labour party activist and member of Blackpool Against the Cuts, said: “It’s great for the town to have major conferences here.

“It’s sad we don’t still have the national party 
conference and I think it’s 
indicative of some senior 
Labour politicians’ metropolitan bias, but Blackpool deserves to have them.

“I always get the impression delegates enjoy coming to Blackpool.

“Hopefully, this fourth year will be a precursor to the main party conference coming back to the resort.

“Blackpool now needs some regeneration and that needs to come from central government, because local authorities don’t have enough money or resources.”

Tourism bosses have also welcomed the news, saying it will form part of the important business tourism that generates up to £44m for Blackpool each year.

VisitBlackpool tourism manager Mandy Tythe-
McCallum said she is delighted to be welcoming the party back. She added: “The fact the NWLP is returning for its fourth year in Blackpool is a real nod of approval to the 
resort because it is an important conference on our business calendar.

“We work incredibly hard to attract conference and event organisers and political events such as the North West Labour Party annual conference are incredibly important to us.”

Coun Graham Cain, Blackpool Council’s cabinet member for tourism and leisure, added: “This is great news for Blackpool.

“To welcome up to a thousand delegates over a two-day period is a major financial boost into the local economy and it also represents an 
opportunity to showcase our resort.”

 

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