Youngsters in Blackpool have been given the opportunity to explore the town’s glittering entertainment history, thanks to funding from the Heritage Lottery.
Members of TramShed Theatre Company received an award of £19,100, under the Young Roots programme, to research Blackpool’s Entertainment Heritage during the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries.
With the help of local history librarian Tony Sharkey and TramShed’s Patron Linda Nolan, the 59-strong group have transferred their research to the stage with a new inclusive performing arts production ‘Follow The Tram’.
The performance which will take place on December 13 and 14 at Thornton Little Theatre will feature headline artists from years gone by, famous theatre locations and popular musical styles of the 1900s.
Zac Hackett, Arts Team Co-ordinator said: “Blackpool is very important to all of our members as it is the community in which they live, so it was nice to learn about the resort’s history.
“We are absolutely delighted the Heritage Lottery Fund Young Roots Programme has awarded us with this grant.
“As a charity we rely on fund-raising and £19,100 is an amazing amount of money to fund this exciting project.
“Many expensive performance elements are covered for the members, including theatre hire, costumes, props and specialist inclusive equipment. If it were not for support shown in this instance TramShed would simply not survive in such difficult financial times.”
Young people explore the town’s heritage
The Young Roots programme funds partnerships of heritage and youth organisations for those aged 11 to 25.
Sara Hilton, Head of Heritage Lottery Fund North West, said: “We are delighted to support such an innovative project.
It has sparked a real interest from the young people in exploring their heritage.
They will not only become more knowledgeable about the history of entertainment in Blackpool, but will learn new skills which will help equip them for the future.”