Punters to go under the needle in tattoo giveaway

Karl Bowker tattooing Laura-Leigh Casson at Mania Tattoo Blackpool
Karl Bowker tattooing Laura-Leigh Casson at Mania Tattoo Blackpool
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A Blackpool tattoo parlour owner is celebrating a successful year in business and paying tribute to his stepfather – by giving away free inkings.

For one day only, Luke Williams, of Mania Tattoo in Station Road, South Shore, is giving away designs free of charge to clients, on a first come, first served basis.

The event, on Tuesday, follows close to 12 months in business for the 30-year-old, who took over the running of the parlour after the death of his stepfather, Gary Jenks, 43, last year.

He said: “I was just a musician when I took over the shop and managed to keep it going.

“My stepdad Gary was due to have heart surgery, but died of a heart attack last October.

“He used to organise the Blackpool Tattoo Convention at the Pleasure Beach.

“He was quite well known. When he died, I thought I would pick up the pieces – this day of free tattoos is a way of giving something back to the local community, who have supported the business in the time I have been in charge.”

Tattooist Karl Bowker will ink the designs, with the giveaway applying to residents with an FY postcode.

Luke said each design must be a small tattoo or large outline, with customers required to show identification and proof of address.

They must be 18-years-old or older, with each tattoo limited to an hour or less.

Luke added: “I’ve had a lot of support to keep Mania Tattoo functioning, and I’d like to thank Karl Bowker, Sean Blanchard from West Coast Tattoos, Gary Taylor from Tam’s Tattoos, Shaun Holt and our guest artist Barry Hearl, who has done some great work at the shop.

“There are plenty of great tattoo studios in Blackpool, and yet there are hundreds of people getting tattoos from scratchers in bedrooms or back street tourist traps.

“I’m hoping that anyone that comes to our shop on Tuesday will see that it’s a whole lot better getting tattooed in a professional studio by a professional artist.

“Our event will also attract people that wouldn’t normally come to the shop, because of where the shop is located, it would be fair for most people to assume that we are a tourist tattoo shop.”

A spokesman for Blackpool Council said there was no issue with the giveaway, as long as proper checks are taken.

He added: “As long as the owner has the correct accreditation and carries out the correct checks, we have no issue. We have had good dealings with the owner in the past.”