‘Blackpool is back!’

Blackpool is preparing to put out the welcome mat after the government confirmed remaining restrictions on the resort’s tourism industry will be lifted from May 17.

The Prime Minister’s roadmap announcement paves the way for indoor hospitality and attractions to reopen along with show venues, hotels and guesthouses.

Councillor Gillian Campbell, cabinet member for tourism and culture at Blackpool Council, described it as “brilliant news” for the tourism industry.

Cllr Campbell said: “The past 15 months have presented some of the most difficult and challenging times in Blackpool’s long tourism history.

“The stop-start nature of lockdowns and tier restrictions wreaked serious financial pressure on our tourism and hospitality businesses, large and small, and we are thrilled that from May 17 we can once again showcase all that we have to offer.”

Cllr Campbell said the resort’s tourism businesses had been meticulously planning for the time when they could reopen to ensure that visitors could enjoy a safe and enjoyable experience.

She added: “We have waited for this moment for so long and now we can safely say that Blackpool is back!”

The easing of restrictions on May 17 means that major indoor attractions such as Blackpool Tower and Circus, the Sandcastle Waterpark, Coral Island, Sea Life and Madame Tussauds will be able to open for business ahead of the next Bank Holiday at the end of the month.

Indoor venues such as the Winter Gardens, Viva Blackpool and Funny Girls will also be welcoming customers back.

Hundreds of hotels and guesthouses, including the new Premier Inn North Pier which has been built on the site of the historic Yates’s Wine Lodge site in Talbot Square, will also be allowed to reopen to overnight visitors,

Last month, the first phase of easing of lockdown restrictions allowed for the reopening of self-catering accommodation and outdoor hospitality and attractions including Blackpool Pleasure Beach, Blackpool Zoo and the three piers.

Blackpool Council has already declared that it will support the reopening and recovery of the resort’s tourism industry with a £1m package of support including a two-month extension to the traditional Illuminations season, as well as additional events and destination marketing.

The support package is intended to give businesses an opportunity to recoup some of the losses they have already incurred this year with the national lockdown wiping out the lucrative Easter period.

The council’s destination marketing arm, VisitBlackpool, has produced a comprehensive package of “Know Before You Go” information on its website.

It advises visitors how to make the most of their trip including opening times, booking details and Covid-safe advice. For full details, go to: www.visitblackpool.com