Letters - August 9, 2016

CHARITYThanks to all those who helped SOSFollowing the BBC DIYSOS Reveal Day, I wanted to express our sincere thanks to all those who contributed to this programme in any way. We know hundreds of individuals, companies, organisations and groups were involved.

Tuesday, 9th August 2016, 9:41 am
Updated Thursday, 25th August 2016, 8:47 pm
Nick Knowles, Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen and Pudsey at the DIY SOS Big Build at Blenheim House in Newton Drive

We feel privileged to have been selected for this programme and for our young carers to have been provided with a unique and distinctive community asset. We are planning to share the venue with as many local individuals, families and community groups that we can.

We have been able to thank a few volunteers personally but, we would like to use your column as a way of thanking ALL those involved. In addition to recognising the wonderful volunteers who turned up in all weathers to carry out physical tasks, we want to thank the generous donors of valuable materials and daily, delicious food supplies for volunteers.

We also recognise the community spirit of the neighbours who had their daily routines disrupted. Blackpool Council and many of our partner agencies provided a wide range of support and this is continuing. We also want to thank all those in the media who worked so closely with the production team, and the Gazette for its extensive coverage and continued support.

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The whole experience demonstrated the remarkable strengths and assets that lie in our local community.

We are holding an open weekend onAugust 12-14, between 10am and 3pm, each of the three days. Please do call in, email, phone or write to let us know the part you played so we can thank you in person.

We know that this programme, the DIY SOS Big Build for Children in Need will raise awareness of young carers and their families across the country and I am confident its positive depiction of Blackpool will help to promote the town in a positive light.

A heartfelt ‘Thank you’ to everyone involved.

Michelle Smith

Chief Executive

Blackpool Carers Centre

Beaverbrook House

Newton Drive

Blackpool

TRIBUTE

Audrey books gave so much pleasure

I was so sad I was to hear of the death of Audrey Howard on July 26, at her home in St Annes.

Audrey was a prolific and accomplished author, writing more than 37 novels. I would say her writing style was similar to Catherine Cookson; mostly family sagas/romantic historical novels.

I have read all her books and enjoyed every one. I have spent many, many pleasurable hours reading her books, once started they were so difficult to put down. I am now reading them all a second time and still enjoying them, finding things in them that I did not realise the first time of reading.

I know Audrey has many fans who may not realise she has passed away. Her funeral is on Friday, August 12 at 11am at Park Crematorium, Lytham.

Thank you Audrey for giving me so much pleasure over the years. God bless you.

Carroll Horsefield

East Gate Close

Lytham

TRANSPORT

Hopefully, extension will be first of many

There has been far too much negativity on the proposed extension of the Blackpool Tramway.

Quite frankly, taxi drivers are leading a scaremongering campaign in which they are hiding the fact that they’re worrying about losing fares by going on about congestion. Is a tram crossing the prom every 5-10 mins for 30 seconds really going to make any difference?

People need to realise this kind of project is the future, and has been shown to work across all the other tram systems in the UK and Europe. Last month, Midland Metro approved a similar length extension for a similar cost to you guessed it, a main rail station! So can this project really be negative if others are doing the same?

We need to stop living in the past and support this first, of hopefully many, extensions. They also don’t realise that £16 million from a grant is being put into the project, so Blackpool Council would be stupid to lose this money by rejecting the scheme. The by-product of demolishing the awful Wilko building is almost worth it alone.

I think this extension will be great for Blackpool and the Fylde. It will give a huge boost to hotels and attractions along the prom giving visitors links to the train station. The Pleasure Beach, in particular, will benefit from this if the service goes here. This will be useful for the residents of Fleetwood and Cleveleys too.

Also, this is a fantastic first step for other extensions like St Anne’s. Linking direct from Blackpool North to St Anne’s would be amazing.

David Smith

via email

TOURISM

Happy memories have been dashed

Whilst I was interested in Barry Band’s history of one of Blackpool’s oldest and most prestigious hotels The Clifton, I was somewhat disappointed no reference was made to the hotel’s famous gay bar.

My connection with this goes back 70 years when, as a young army serviceman, I met the wonderful person who was to become my partner later on.

The bar was popular with both locals and visitors (and included a number of American servicemen stationed at Warton). Everyone fell in love with the elderly (to us) landlady, Mrs Mills.

Recently, for old times’ sake, I ventured into town intending to revive happy memories of the bar, only to be shocked at the state of the entire hotel in its state of disrepair, apparently closed with a small sign on a window declaring it to be the Ibis hotel! So much for memories and a disappointment not being able to lovingly revive them.

Neil Kendall

Stamford Avenue

South Shore