Blackpool Football Club's new stand will make families homeless on Henry Street
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Bosses at the club want to demolish the houses on Henry Street before the festive period so they can build a 4,600-seat East Stand at their Bloomfield Road ground.
And Blackpool Council plan to issue compulsory purchase orders if landlords or homeowners do not agree to sell the houses soon.
It is thought the council are offering up to £90,000 for a house and £130,000 for a car garage.
Danielle Caton, 39, has lived in her terraced home for 17 years and is ‘terrified’ of being made homeless.
Danielle, who works at a GP Practice, in Layton, said: "My landlord has accepted the offer so we have to find somewhere else. My youngest son has learning difficulties so it will mean a massive upheaval for him. I’m worried sick.”
Council don’t see us as a priority
Danielle’s youngest son attends a SEND school on Whitegate Drive, and fears they will end up having to move out of the local area.
“I have put down for a council house but they don’t see us as a priority while we are still living here. I have a letter from his school and one from the family doctor to say how it will impact my son, but they don’t seem to care.”
‘They told us to put dad in a home’
Homeowners, Damien and Joanne Dinsmore, fear they will be forced into a compulsory purchase order, unless they sell their home for less-than the market value.
Joanne, 50, told Blackpool Gazette: “We have built an annexe for our dad to live in, so we can continue to care for him as he is sick. We will never find another suitable home as we’re looking at around £170,000. They have offered us £82,000.”
To make matters worse, Joanne said the person who came to value the house suggested that she could ‘put [her] dad in a care home’ and encourage her ‘son to move out to a flat’.
Son heard rumours at school
"We weren’t told anything about this at the start. There was no consultation with residents. My son kept hearing rumours at school, and then we found out when a surveyor contacted us last November.”
Joanne was considering her retirement from the NHS, but thinks she will have to take out a second mortgage to buy a new home that can accommodate their three children and elderly father.
Her husband, Damien, said: “This is pure greed from the football company. We’ve been treated awful. There’s no compassion”.
What did Blackpool Council say?
A Blackpool Council spokesperson said: “The Revoe Community Sports Village will help regenerate the local area around Henry Street by building sports pitches for Blackpool Football Club and its Community Trust, as well as development of a new East Stand.
“We are liaising with the property owners on Henry Street around purchasing their properties through negotiation on a voluntary basis at this stage.
"We would only explore other options if we cannot buy the houses within a reasonable timescale.
“Some owners have chosen to sell already, and advice is available for residents or tenants who need additional support. Nobody will be asked to move out without reasonable warning and it is not our intention for that to happen before Christmas.
“We are very aware that we are buying people’s homes and have written to all residents to offer advice and support, to make sure that nobody is made homeless by the scheme.”