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Poetic License: My Name is Blackpool

In the latest of our series showcasing poets from or about Blackpool, Ryan Mulholland puts himself in Blackpool’s shoes and finds its tongue firmly in its cheek.
My Name is Blackpool

I’ll be honest with you, I used to be a lot more popular.
But now not so much, I’ve developed a bit
Of a reputation, I’ve turned into a bit of a shit
I’ve sunk below my previous station, but in recent years I’ve made a recovery,
As people have found the other things I’m good for, they’ve rediscovered me.

My name is Blackpool, grab a stool, let me make your acquaintance,
I’ve got millions of stories, sure to entertain us all.
But I must make sure you know that we won’t be going over
The same tired old cliches, stories and hearsay.
I don’t want to speak about my life 50 years ago,
My obvious peak, which I find so, so, old hat.
And I don’t want to chat about the things I’ve done badly:
The teenage pregnancy, the drugs, the violence.
It’s not that I want to silence the folks who discuss those issues,
It’s just that this poem must stay the course or I will lose
My train of thought, the reason I put pen to book.

So without further adieu, enough of the foreplay,
Here are just a few of the reasons people love me today.

I’m an incredible host, my arms are open
To the most random collection of visitors
That make their way inside my perimeter.

Punks and magicians, people who fancy pigeons,
They all come and see me each year, and grace my centre,
Because there’s no place they’d rather be than here.

Yes, I know the young farmers make a mess
And then there’s the Tory party conference, well the less
Said about them the best, let’s forget them, they’re history
But let’s not forget the final of Strictly.
Because my Ballroom’s world famous,
More awesome than any audacious place you may find in Las Vegas.
I’ve got more class coming out of my anus.

The fact is I attract this diverse range of people,
To my halls and my venues, and I love them to be full.
Nowt better than theatre that’s so well attended
The Empress Ballroom is glorious, The Grand is just splendid.
Entertainment goes way past those two famous venues;
My amazement is that a basement can house musical legends,
Bootleg Social has been host to some incredible people
And I just saw Wheatus play The Waterloo two weeks ago.

Okay, so I may not be tasteful or sleek
Though there are so many things that make me wholly unique,
Places of beauty, incredible features,
Make your way up my sand dunes, walk on my beaches
Skate down my prom, past my comedy carpet,
Or carry on over to see Stanley Park, it’s
The 5th greatest park on these fair British Isles
But don’t believe me, I’m quoting The Times.
Many people have gazed in awe at my Tower,
When I wear my best orange net dress, people say I’m on fire.
And on my beach you will reach more than just buried treasure,
My Big One will fill you with dread and with pleasure.
I keep my hounds on the hill and my girls are so funny
Get your 2ps ready and fill me with money.
I’ve got piers out my ears.
But don’t fear, they’re not Morgan,
My lights will illuminate
Here up to Morecambe.
From the sober to dribbling, I’m one special town
God bless Mr Wriggly, only a pound.

I know I’ve been right to the brink of acceptability.
My name is Blackpool, I’m no fool, I know what people think of me.
Don’t underestimate the choices I’ve made to update my reputation.
I’m attempting to elevate myself back above my previous station.
As people have found the things I’m good for, they’ve rediscovered me.
So I’m on the road to recovery, good for me.

Main image by Jason Connolly

Reclaim Blackpool - Mapping Sexual Harrasment
  • Mully is a writer and musician from Blackpool. Formerly an English Literature teacher, he is currently a copywriter, and enjoys movies, long walks on the beach, and clichéd lists.

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