‘Help us survive’ plea to town hall

Peter Powney claims his business Sandwich Express on Lytham Road is at risk due to the council's failiure to invest in the area and focus on the Promenade
Peter Powney claims his business Sandwich Express on Lytham Road is at risk due to the council's failiure to invest in the area and focus on the Promenade
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A SHOPKEEPER claims hundreds of new homes being built around the corner from his shop will not be enough to save his business – and he wants the town hall to stump up the cash to revamp his road.

Peter Powney says his Lytham Road sandwich shop is under-threat unless Blackpool Council take action to drive more tourists to the area.

Mr Powney, who says he has invested around £220,000 into Sandwich Express, wants the authority to stop focusing on revitalising the Promenade and instead turn its attention to the “forgotten” Lytham Road area.

And he does not believe the announcement of hundreds of new families living in new houses on a 400-home estate to built on the council’s Rigby Road site, revealed by The Gazette yesterday, will be enough to help him hold on.

Mr Powney told The Gazette: “We are the forgotten road and we need help.

“We have invested our whole life-savings into this shop and the council are doing nothing for us, we feel like we’ve just ripped our money up. It’s always the Promenade they focus on and we would like Lytham Road to be a proper extension of that, but noone wants to listen.”

Mr Powney wants the whole road improved and the Illuminations brought inland to include Lytham Road, a move he believes would revitalise the area and encourage visitors to move off the Promenade and visit shops like his.

And he said the council’s new estate was far more likely to benefit the sandwich shops on Central Drive than his business. He added: “If they don’t do something to help I will have to sell my property.

“The new estate is half a mile away and I don’t believe it will help – there are two sandwich shops on Central Drive and they might benefit, but I won’t.”

Coun Gary Coleman, cabinet member for regeneration and urban development, said: “I can understand Mr Powney’s concerns, we know businesses are struggling during these tough economic times. However, we as a council are trying to bring in projects and initiatives which will help to boost the local economy and the jobs market.

“This new development will undoubtedly bring benefits to local businesses both during the construction phase and when the homes are occupied.”

The new scheme announced yesterday is to be built on land close to Blackpool FC which the club had wanted set aside for future stadium expansion.

But when contacted, team bosses said they did not want to comment on the announcement of the homes project.