Toy store admits resort move...finally!

Early December:  Smyths granted planning permission
Early December: Smyths granted planning permission
  • Early December: Smyths granted planning permission
  • December: Advertise online for ‘Duty Manager’
  • December 22: ‘We have no knowledge of store opening’
  • February 3: ‘We are pleased to announce a new store’
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A national toy chain which denied all knowledge of planning a store in Blackpool has revealed it will be opening at a former popular football centre after all.

And the move which will see a 23,000 sq ft Smyths Toys Superstore up and running in April will create 35 jobs.

The company denied in December that it was planning to move into the former DW Soccer Centre on 
Vicarage Lane despite having lodged plans with the 

Parents and football coaches were left fuming when they were told at short notice that the centre was to close in the New Year.

Blackpool Council granted a request from Smyths for planning permission to turn the football centre into a ‘bulky goods retail shop’ in December.

A planning and retail statement submitted on behalf of the firm, which mistakenly described the unit as ‘vacant’, said: “Smyths Toys are expanding their operation across the UK and have a longstanding requirement for a store in Blackpool.”

But when The Gazette first contacted the company about the move, it denied all knowledge of the plan even though it was recruiting for aDuty Manager in Blackpool on its website. A spokesman said on December 22: “We regret we have no prior knowledge for a store opening in Blackpool.”

Today, however, Rob Guckian, from Smyths, which has 85 stores nationally, said: “Smyths Toys Superstores are pleased to announce a new store opening in Blackpool.

“This is an exciting opportunity for us and we cannot wait to welcome new customers to the store.

“We are looking for enthusiastic staff who are passionate about toys.”