Tangerines will soon be flying off the shelf

The new Blackpool FC shop is taking shape in Hounds Hill shopping centre. Painter Dean Clark prepares the walls for another coat of tangerine.
The new Blackpool FC shop is taking shape in Hounds Hill shopping centre. Painter Dean Clark prepares the walls for another coat of tangerine.
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Most blokes put football before shopping any day.

But soon Tangerines fans will be able to enjoy both after Blackpool FC announced it is opening its first town centre store.

Blackpool's Tom Ince

Blackpool's Tom Ince

The club is putting the finishing touches to its new shop in the Houndshill Centre which will open early in November.

All things tangerine will adorn the shelves, with tickets for home games and stadium tours also on sale.

It is hoped as well as appealing to residents, the move will encourage more of Blackpool’s visitors to take in a game as part of their holiday experience.

Head of retail at Blackpool FC Richard Wild said: “The large influx of tourists into the town every year and the popularity of the club means we feel strongly that an additional unit in Houndshill shopping centre will prove popular.

“At present tourists in Blackpool have to come somewhat off the beaten track to buy merchandise, book tickets or arrange a ground tour, and we want to make it easier for them to do all of this by having a presence in town.

“The same principle applies to local people as well, the easier we can make it for all concerned, the better it should be.

“We have spoken to the owners of Houndshill for several years but for various reasons we have never been able to get anything off the ground. Fortunately this has now changed and we are very much looking forward to getting the unit up and running.”

Ticket Office manager Sarah Nibloe added: “We receive a huge amount of requests for tickets from tourists for every home game.

“We are firmly of the opinion that the more opportunities and venues we have to sell tickets, the better it will be for our attendances.

“A lot of people who are on the Fylde Coast for a short period are interested in coming to Bloomfield Road and we hope this additional sales point will make things easier for them to buy tickets.”

The new shop, near Superdrug, will initially open on a six month trial basis, seven days a week during the centre’s normal opening hours.

Autograph-signing sessions and other special events are also set to be held regularly. Houndshill manager Debbs Lancelott said: “We are really excited about it because it is something completely different in the shopping centre which we have never had before.

“It is also supporting the club which is a great community asset to the town.

“They have some good ideas, such as bringing some of the lads down to the shopping centre for autograph signing sessions which ties in really well with the fans.

“It is a nice extension of our partnership with the football club.”

The existing club shop and ticket office will remain open at the stadium.

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