TEENAGERS are being warned they may need urgent medical attention after a makeshift tattoo studio was raided.
At least one child was left infected and required hospital treatment after the tattooist inked pupils from a filthy landing at the house on Osborne Road, South Shore.
Now Blackpool Council is trying to track down others who may have been illegally tattooed.
Trading Standards officers raided the property last week and discovered the 55-year-old had been tattooing children in appalling conditions.
The makeshift tattoo parlour had been set up on the stair landing of the house where pets – including snakes – were allowed to roam freely and defecate, people were smoking and used needles had been left in a sink.
And officers also found consent letters – some dating back several years – purporting to be from the parents of the under-age youngsters the man had tattooed.
But bosses are warning tattooing any under-18s is against the law, regardless of whether permission appears to have been given by an adult.
Officers raided the property after concerns were raised by members of the public, and Coun Gillian Campbell, the council’s cabinet member for housing and public protection, said: “We are determined to protect young people and prevent the tattooing of people in unsafe conditions. We’re keen to send out a message that we will take action against anyone who we suspect of illegal tattooing and shut them down.
“Illegal tattooing in unsafe conditions poses very serious health risks and we will not tolerate it.”
It is thought the needles which were discovered in the sink had possibly been washed for re-use without sterilisation, and Blackpool Council is now in the process of contacting schools in an attempt to trace other children who may have been tattooed. They are being warned they need to go to hospital for health checks because of the risk of infections and HIV from dirty needles.
The man was given a tattoo prohibition order by the council, which means he will be fined £20,000 per tattoo if he tattoos anyone illegally in the future.