Pat’s just the job for Illuminations

After narrowly escaping the Illuminations depot blaze, Postman Pat and Jess are now back in their rightful position on Queens Promenade in Bispham

After narrowly escaping the Illuminations depot blaze, Postman Pat and Jess are now back in their rightful position on Queens Promenade in Bispham

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YOU can always rely on Postman Pat!

The dependable postie has made a welcome return to his position on the Promenade at Bispham after surviving a major fire.

Since June’s devastating blaze at the old Illuminations depot on Rigby Road, it had been feared the popular tableau would never be seen again.

Fallen concrete and metal girders left Pat in a rather sorry state. His trademark red van was crushed beyond repair.

But thanks to intense restoration work, the much-loved children’s character – who celebrates his 30th birthday this year – is back alongside his trusty sidekick Jess the cat.

Richard Howard, 41, from Poulton, was inspecting Pat’s new paintwork during a bike ride with his son Jack, eight, and nephew Roman McIntyre, also eight.

Mr Howard said: “Having Pat back means the tableaus are getting better.

“You can see they have put a lot of effort into it.”

Mr Howard’s son Jack added: “I really like Pat and I think it’s a good thing for Blackpool.”

Roman was also pleased to see the return of his favourite tableau. He told The Gazette: “It’s really cool he’s back because I was sad when I heard what had happened to him.”

Graham Meek, 61, from Norbreck, added: “It’s nice to see him back and he is looking good.”

Fylde coast residents are not the only people Pat has endeared himself to.

Betty Bush, 64, was visiting from Southend-on-Sea.

She said: “It’s brilliant he’s back here. The displays are superb and I’m glad to see him.”

Blackpool councillor Graham Cain, cabinet member for tourism and culture, said: “I know how disappointed people were when Postman Pat was damaged in the fire.

“I’m delighted that he’s now back on the cliffs at Bispham looking better than ever.”