Blackpool skate shop quits town centre over road works

A Blackpool skate shop has been forced to move out of town, its owner said, by the chaos caused by the tram works.

Big Woody’s, which was in Talbot Road opposite Sacred Heart Church near Talbot Square has now moved to the Devonshire Road end of the street.

Woody and Andrea Clayton a the new Big Woodys shop on Talbot Road

Woody and Andrea Clayton a the new Big Woodys shop on Talbot Road

The shop had been on the point of closing for some time due to the fall in passing trade since the work to build the tram extension had begun.

Owner Woody said: “The road has now been closed for a year. We, maybe foolishly, stayed in the hope that the assurances from the council that the works on the tramway would be finished and the road outside our shop reopened by end of September.

“This never happened , in fact the situation went from bad to worse , and the road will not reopen until March 2019 at the earliest. The utter chaos means that pedestrians cannot negotiate the maze of barriers and blockades to the businesses that have managed to survive this long.

“The closure of the promenade and the new diversions around the Wilko store have led to Blackpool being gridlocked with traffic for most of the day which will certainly discourage the Christmas shoppers from coming to town.

“We, very sadly, had to let both our members staff go, they had been with us for eight years and obviously this was very upsetting for us.

“We are now at 370,Talbot Road, at the junction of Devonshire Road, which we hope will be a good location for our business with the bonus of free customer parking and customers no longer having to battle through the chaos caused by the ridiculous decision of Blackpool Council to spend outrageous amounts of money on a pointless extension to the tramway.”

Signs are present to tell potential customers that the businesses are open in the Talbot Road area.

Blackpool Council has said: “We are actively working with the businesses on Talbot Road to look at ways of supporting trade during the town centre improvement works.
“We are keen to get the message across that all these businesses are open as usual.”