Last week’s Big Pier Watch Day was a bit of a joyous surprise. North Pier threw open its doors to welcome people to a whole host of events including a live band, sandcastle sculpture, kite making, a coconut shy and a sneaky peek around the amazing art deco theatre.

As a Blackpool resident I am not sure you could feel any prouder, with the sun blazing down and the sweet tinkle of carousel music playing nearby. The day had a feel of what Blackpool is built on, performance, variety and even Punch and Judy. Punch and Judy? I haven’t seen a Punch and Judy show since I was little, perhaps Punch was curtailed for being a little too “hands on” with Judy, his antics since reigned in to entertain a rally of new children who might never have experienced the classic squeaks of the vintage jester and his wife. I can tell you those children were entertained.

For the pier buffs there was an exhibition celebrating 200 years since the birth of Eugenius Birch, the designer of North Pier and many other early piers around the country. In 2017 Blackpool’s piers were included on the 2018 World Monuments Watch, with recognition of the challenges they face from climate change. The biennial campaign provides local people, activists, and experts around the world with an opportunity to initiate a grassroots call-to-action for the places they want to protect. Pier Watch Day is a component of the programme that aims to connect communities to their built heritage through public events.

Keep your eyes peeled for the next one, because it was as perfect as candy floss.

For more information about the World Monuments Fund project visit wmf.org


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