Gazette comment: Supercasino. City By The Sea. Northern Powerhouse.

Andy Sykes deputy editor of The Gazette
Andy Sykes deputy editor of The Gazette

Blackpool folk could be forgiven for having their fill of grand plans which promise to transform their fortunes.

Endless press releases with fancy phrases and a multitude of platitudes are increasingly met with cynicism. And who can blame them?

But - and you’ll have to take our word for this - this project is different. It could be the first project (with the right people on board for once) that could actually solve Blackpool’s plethora of social and economic problems.

The Gazette first became involved in promoting Pride of Place back in the summer.

As well as the usual suspects, we spoke to those on the board who have grown up in Blackpool and gone on to achieve huge success elsewhere.

Carrie Longton and Christine Hodgson spoke with incredible passion about their childhoods on the Fylde coast when we interviewed them.

They are not here to simply tick a box and make themselves feel better about themselves.

They want to use their influence to try to end the cycle of deprivation Blackpool is embroiled in.

But they are on honest.

There is no truck load of money winging its way up the M6. No magic money tree to solve our ills.

But there is a will and passion, and a sizeable strength in numbers, to put pressure on Government to simply not brush us aside any longer.

The council can only do so much. So can MPs. Often it is business that holds the key - which is why people like Carrie and Christine being involved raises this from yet another pie-in-the-sky dream.

For once, there is a co-ordinated and concerted gang of people who are determined to fight on all fronts for Blackpool.

Backed by passionate local people like council chief executive Neil Jack and Tower boss Kate Shane, it may take time to see the benefits.

Dismiss it if you like, but we’re backing them to the hilt, for the good of the town we all hold dear. We’re all fed up of being the worst in the country for various ailments - this could be our best chance to end that misery.

People who have clout in the corridors of power are standing up to fight for Blackpool.

Will you too?

ANDY SYKES