Squires Gate to take on a new role
The news this week highlights imminent changes to the large site occupying land between Blackpool and St Annes. Government approval for the creation of an Enterprise Zone that utilises existing industrial units is likely to transform this part of Blackpool (and the neighbouring Fylde Borough).
It seems likely that the familiar Airport passenger building will be demolished or
converted to a specialist training college and a smaller facility created closer to the runway apron. Short hop flights, private aviation and helicopter operation (for the Irish Sea Gas Field rigs and emergencies) will continue from Squires Gate under the new proposals for the airport. However longer haul services will be discontinued freeing up land for alternative use and better economies of operation. We are saying goodbye to this friendly transport resource which was
of real value for Fylde residents and those not wishing to drive out to south
Manchester or Speke. Some memories from the former terminal the day before closure taken by John Woodman : October 14, 2014
LAST DAY ARRIVALS OCTOBER 14 2014
Of further interest is the probable transfer of Blackpool's bus operations from the Rigby Road location to the new Enterprise Zone development. This will include the offices and support staff but leaves in place (as far as is known) the tram depot and workshops. Blackpool's buses have roared out of the Garage and onto Rigby Road since the early 1920s. It may be that this transfer may coincide with centenary of the original Blackpool Corporation Tramways operation - a fitting ending point for this long familiar feature of the town's industrial past.
Tribute to Rigby Road Works volumes One and Two recount the history of this site and Blackpool's distinctive transport operations since 1922. The latest volume which recounts the past six years and momentous changes will be published April 2016.
Airport Images : copyright John Woodman