Blackpool Tower hero Dave's a community stalwart
The campaign to find 125 local heroes to help mark the anniversary of the building of Blackpool Tower is well under way.
And today’s hero is someone who has taken the idea of giving something back to the community to heart.
Dave Blacker is a member of a host of community groups and a keen champion of young people in the town.
From his work with the Police and Communities Together organisation, to being a Sunday School teacher at New Central Methodist Church, his work as a governor of St Johns Primary School to his 43-year long involvement with Blackpool Boys and Girls Club, he has played an active role in local society.
Other groups include the Family Hub for Talbot and Brunswick, the Town Centre Planning Group and the Neighbourhood Watch Executive Committee.
In 2007, his work with the youth organisation earned him an MBE, a trip to Buckingham Palace to meet Prince Charles and the chance to get a cheeky autograph from pop star Kylie Minogue.
His wife Kathie nominated him, saying the breadth of his work links many community groups together.
She said: “Dave has dedicated most of his life to helping the young people, the Neighbourhood in which he lives and also the town of Blackpool of which he is very proud to be a resident.”
The former BAE Systems communications adviser chairs the Talbot PACT group which the Police Commissioner for Lancashire described as one of the most active in the county with between 30 and 40 members turning out to each meeting.
Dave said: “I think the Talbot PACT group is so successful because we have great support for the police and the council.
“The local police team led by Sgt Ian Andrew and the ward councillors area great and we often have top people from the council present such as Tim Coglan from Trading Standards. When people ask a question we always try to give them an answer, if not on the night, then within a month. That is important it builds trust.”
At the Boys and Girls club, Dave said he draws on his years of experience but lets the young people and leaders take the lead with the projects they engage in.
He added: “I am very grateful that someone has nominated me. I was pleased when I was nominated for my MBE.
"But afterwards I thought it is something you can’t keep going on about because you would just look a fool. So I thought, ‘How can I use it for something useful for the community.and every so often it comes in handy?’”