Lytham St Annes or Lytham and St Annes? We look at local place names that cause a stir

A 'Welcome to Anchorsholme' sign is helping the area create its own identity
A 'Welcome to Anchorsholme' sign is helping the area create its own identity
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It should be a fairly straight forward process to state which town you live in.

But here on the Fylde coast a mixture of history, local custom and sometimes snobbery has muddied the waters.

Lytham looking north along the Green and Warton Street

Lytham looking north along the Green and Warton Street

Apart from causing huge confusion for visitors unaware that Lytham St Annes for instance is in fact two separate towns rather than one, it leads to countless arguments about what are the correct geographical terms.

Sometimes differences of opinion are fueled by bafflement over the borders between neighbourhoods.

Does anyone really know where Ansdell ends and Fairhaven begins for example?

Other disagreements are the result of one-upmanship. Are your friends more impressed if your postal address is Thornton rather than Cleveleys?

Is Rossall Point part of Fleetwood or Cleveleys?

Is Rossall Point part of Fleetwood or Cleveleys?

Meanwhile Anchorsholme is within Blackpool’s local authority boundaries but has a Cleveleys postcode.

Here we speak to community representatives in a bid to disentangle some of the mysteries of how we describe where we live.

* Is it Cleveleys and Thornton or Thornton-Cleveleys?

Former Gazette journalist and local historian David Pearce said: “Thornton is a very old place that goes back to the Domesday Book, while Cleveleys is much more modern.

“Tom Gallon Lumb was an early twentieth century mayor of Blackpool but he lived in The Towers, off West Drive, and he hoped there would one day be a city of the Fylde uniting the whole coast.

“He bought up the Fleetwood Estate Company which owned acres of land and in 1906 an exhibition was held with prizes for the best design of houses.

“West Drive, Stockdove Way, Whiteside Way and Cleveleys Avenue are some of these, and this put Cleveleys on the map.

“In 1927 the districts of Thornton and Cleveleys were brought together under the control of Thornton-Cleveleys urban district which is why many people refer to Thornton-Cleveleys nowadays.

“That became part of Wyre Borough Council in 1974.

“I’d say most people tend to say they are from Thornton or Cleveleys.

“Thornton has always kept more of its rural flavour although a lot of its green fields have now been built on.

“Further down from Cleveleys is Rossall which is part of Fleetwood, although people who live there tend to say they live at Rossall rather than Fleetwood.

“Rossall is a relatively modern development built in the ‘60s amd ‘70s.”

Gazette web editor Colin Ainscough, who lives in Fleetwood, added: “Fleetwood is a patchwork quilt of former council properties, terraced streets, semi-detached and sea front homes.

“From Chatsworth, Broadway, Larkholme and The Esplanade to the new Harbour Village the people of Fleetwood are very proud of their little bit of this diverse town and woe betide anyone who blurs the lines.

“That is unless you live in Rossall, where some of the residents believe they live in Cleveleys despite having to pass the ‘Welcome to Fleetwood’ sign to get there.”

* Do St Annes residents say they are from Lytham St Annes to sound more posh?

St Annes-based amateur historian Arnold Sumner says contrary to popular belief, St Annes was always considered more upmarket than its immediate neighbour.

He explained: “Years ago if you wanted to appear to be from wealthy stock, you said you lived in St Annes (pronounced ‘saint arnes’ to sound even more posh).

“In the 1920s when the charabancs came through with holidaymakers, people would be told to stay very quiet when they came through St Annes.

“Now things are changing a bit and Lytham is a bit more wealthy with more expensive house prices.”

In 1922 Lytham and St Annes town councils joined forces to create Lytham St Annes.

Arnold said: “In 1922 Lytham didn’t have electricity but St Annes had its own generating station in St David’s Road North.

“And I think the only reason Lytham wanted to join with St Annes was to have some of its electricity.”

Arnold says he has an acquaintance in Lytham who does not recognise St Annes at all, but calls it ‘Lytham West.”

He added: “After the town councils joined up for a long time people would say Lytham and St Annes and as time went by they dropped the ‘and’ and it became just Lytham St Annes.

“It causes great confusion.

“For example when the Open Golf is here the commentators refer to it as in Lytham when really the course is in St Annes.”

As for the distinction between Ansdell and Fairhaven, even Arnold is stumped on that one.

He said: “I asked an old chap in Ansdell Institute about it once and he said ‘if you’ve got a lot of money you live in Fairhaven and if you’ve got now’t you live in Ansdell’.

“However people living in Regent Road and Islay Road might dispute that!”

*Is Anchorsholme really in Blackpool?

A quick google search immediately throws up the enigma that is Anchorsholme.

For if you want to find out the address of Anchorsholme Academy it comes up as Eastpines Drive, Blackpool, Thornton-Cleveleys FY5 3RX.

The address boasts the names of three different towns!

The source of this confusion is that Anchorsholme lies within the local authority boundaries of Blackpool but has Cleveleys post codes.

It is a real headache for local councillors Paul Galley and Tony Williams, which is why they are trying to give Anchorsholme its own separate identity.

Coun Galley said: “We wanted to rebrand it as it is its own unique area but people think it’s half in Blackpool and half in Cleveleys.

“So we have put a sign on the corner of Luton Road and Anchorsholme Lane saying ‘welcome to Anchorsholme the Garden of Blackpool’.

“We’ve got Blackpool to thank for our services - the sea defences, roads etc.

“One of the biggest issues which illustrates this is the library.

“We have invested a lot into Anchorsholme Library but over the border they have lost their library due to cuts by Lancashire County Council.

“So it is very important that Anchorsholme is in Blackpool.

“The other day I overheard someone on the tram saying they were just arriving in Anchorsholme, rather than Cleveleys, so I think there is a lot more pride in the area now.”