Youth hope for former nightclub

The disused 'The Club' premises on Waterloo Road, South Shore.

The disused 'The Club' premises on Waterloo Road, South Shore.

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A charity is hoping to move to new premises in a bid to help more young people.

The Boathouse Youth Charity currently meets at St Peter’s Church on Lytham Road, South Shore, but has outgrown the venue.

Now it has applied to Blackpool Council for planning permission to convert a former nightclub into a youth centre.

It is hoped to change The Club on Waterloo Road, South Shore – formerly known as Bar 24/7 and Jokers – into a hub hosting a range of activities for young people.

Laurance Hancock, operations manager for the charity, said: “We currently run our youth club from a church hall five nights a week and do other stuff on the streets.

“We have 480 members and have completely outgrown the church hall. We want to have our own premises so we can be open seven days a week.

“We can only have 120 people in the hall and if we exceed that we have to turn kids away and we don’t want to do that.”

As well as needing to secure planning permission, the scheme will also depend on successful funding applications.

The plans include a table sports room, an IT cafe, a refreshments bar, an arts and crafts room, a lounge and storage space for the club’s equipment. A chair lift would be installed to enable people with disabilities to access the facilities.

The charity, which hopes to have the new centre up and running by April next year, caters for young people aged from five to 16.

It is proposed at peak times there will be as many as 10 staff in the building, while during quieter periods there will be three.

Opening hours would be from 3pm until 10pm on weekdays, and from 10am until 10pm at weekends.

Nightclub The Club had a chequered past and in 2008 had its licence suspended for three months amid concerns over crime and disorder.