Winter Gardens Open Day was a ‘very special event’

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More than 3,000 people took advantage of an ‘access all areas’ open day at Blackpool’s Winter Gardens.

The world-famous entertainment complex threw open its doors on Sunday, inviting guests to take to the vast stage of the Opera House, climb backstage stairs to the dressing rooms which have played host to a galaxy of stars over the years, and take in the often overlooked Spanish Suites.

Photo Neil Cross'Blackpool Winter Gardens open day'Alan Simpson of Layton, in the stalls - favourite show Ken Dodd

Photo Neil Cross'Blackpool Winter Gardens open day'Alan Simpson of Layton, in the stalls - favourite show Ken Dodd

Every corner of the 4.9 acre centre was explored, and visitors were treated to tunes in tandem played on the Opera House’s iconic Wurlitzer organ and the newly refurbished pipe organ in the neighbouring Empress Ballroom, where a free tea dance was also held.

The event was the second of its kind, in recent years and has been hailed a great success by complex management and the Winter Gardens Trust.

Winter Gardens general manager Kathy Smith said: “The open day was a huge success and enjoyed by the thousands that attended to explore what the Winter Gardens has to offer.

“It’s a joy to see so many different generations who might be visiting the building to rekindle old memories or to discover its magic for the first time.

“It was a very special event and we hope to announce plans for the next open day in the near future.”

And the trust made the most of the opportunity to promote its work in supporting the historic venue and to attract new members.

Trust member Carl Carrington said: “The Winter Gardens Trust supported the event and signed up over 100 new members during the day.

“The trust works closely with the venue’s operators on events and activities raising the profile of the Grade II-listed building.

“It was great to see so many visitors and hear people’s memories of attending the Winter Gardens in the past.”