It’s the end of an era for a day care centre that shut its doors after serving the people of Blackpool for almost three decades.
Staff at the Beaufort Day Care Centre, based at Bispham Methodist Church, on Beaufort Avenue, threw a party yesterday to mark its closure after 29 years.
More than 1,000 people have benefited from the service provided by staff and volunteers over the years, with the centre caring for 25 people a day at its peak.
Former manager Jane Hadley had been at the centre since it first opened in 1984
She said: “It has been a wonderful experience.
“I joined as a manager right at the start and although I retired eight and a half years ago, I still go every two weeks.
“We have helped getting on for 1,300 people in that time.”
The 69-year-old said when its contract with Blackpool Council went out to tender, changing care needs in the resort meant the centre was no longer in a position to bid.
She added: “It’s the end of an era for us.
“It’s all very sad but we have had a lot of support over the years and we have had some very good volunteers.”
Ron Taylor, 82, spent 20 years volunteering as a driver but more recently has made the most of the facilities on offer at the centre himself.
He said: “I was at church one Sunday and someone said would anybody volunteer.
“I wasn’t working at the time so I decided to give it a go.”
Now, having discovered first hand how the centre helps people, he said he will be sad to see it go.
Coun Don Clapham, who represents Bispham, praised the impact the centre has had since it opened.
He added: “They have done a fantastic job for the community. It was the very first in Blackpool – they were trend-setters. It’s a shame it is all coming to an end.”