Blackpool town centre businesses teamed up to brainstorm ways of boosting the high street and attracting more visitors and shoppers.
Representatives from 40 shops, bars and businesses gathered at the Renaissance Room in the Winter Gardens for a forum which aimed to come up with ideas for closer working around events and activities to benefit themselves and the town.
It was organised by Business in the Community and the Healthy High Streets project along with Blackpool BID, the Blackpool Coastal Communities team and the council.
Carly Harrison from the Santander Bank in Church Street and Business in the Community said: “The objective of Healthy High Streets is to increase footfall and reduce the number of empty shop units in town centres.
“The aim is to get everyone working together to improve our town centre. One way we can do this is by working together around forthcoming events such as Children in Need and Christmas.
“For example some shops in town have already said they will be organising something for Children in Need on November 13 but others are not.
“If everyone is putting on an event in an area, maybe fancy dress or fund-raising activity it makes the area vibrant and allows all the shops and businesses to link together. It’s is all about how we can maximise the opportunities for attracting more visitors and shoppers and about sharing ideas about how we can improve Blackpool generally, improve the high street and get more people coming to the town.”
Rob Green from the Blackpool, Fylde and Wyre Economic Development Company said: “There was clear enthusiasm displayed by Blackpool businesses for working together to help improve the town and support the many events and activities which are organised by Blackpool BID and the council.
“We are looking to see more of the town’s businesses open on Sundays, events days and into the evenings during the main visitor season – to offer a great shopping experience for Fylde coast residents and visitors alike.”
Eileen Ormand from Blackpool BID said: “This is all part of the Business In The Community and Healthy High Streets programme.
“The idea is to work with the businesses to look at ways of drawing the business community together.
“BIDS have the know-how and knowledge but it is also about bringing in the businesses with their different viewpoints which can make all the difference. It is about ringing business together in ways they have not thought of before and it is for them to take a proactive approach.”