CONSERVATIVE Party chairman Grant Shapps praised £1.5m restoration work at the Winter Gardens during a flying visit to Blackpool.
Mr Shapps, who was in the resort to support Tim Ashton’s campaign in the Lancashire police and crime commissioner (PCC) elections, said he was pleased to see the progress which had been made at the Grade II listed landmark.
It is hoped the investment can help attract the big party political conferences back to Blackpool.
Mr Shapps said: “It is great to be back in the Winter Gardens.
“I first started coming here for National Union of Students conferences a long time ago and then for many great Conservative conferences including when David Cameron gave his speech pitching for the leadership.
“I think people knew the Winter Gardens was not at its best and it’s great to come back and see some of the work that has been undertaken.
“I will be going back to London and reporting there is much progress being made and who knows what might happen in the future.”
A Gazette online survey found 60 per cent of respondents said getting more bobbies on the beat should be the priority for whoever was elected police commissioner.
Mr Shapps said: “Having visible law enforcement is very reassuring for people.
“I see crime in Lancashire is down which is good, but I think it can go further down and Tim is the right person to achieve this with his ideas.”
The other candidates standing in the election next Thursday are Clive Grunshaw (Labour), Afzal Anwar (Lib Dem) and Robert Drobny (UK Independence Party).