More details have been revealed today about Blackpool’s first museum.
The £13m museum will be named ‘Showtown’ and officials say that it will celebrate Blackpool’s history as the UK’s most popular seaside destination.
The themed spaces will be the first permanent displays in a UK public museum relating to circus, magic, variety and ballroom dance – filled with over 800 objects from Blackpool’s internationally significant and extensive collections and those on loan from national partners, including the Victoria and Albert Museum and private partners.
Objects on loan from the Victoria and Albert Museum include much loved comedian and entertainer Tommy Cooper’s headtwister illusion magic trick and costumes worn by comedy stars Eric Morecambe and Ernie Wise.
A rare signed black bowler hat which was owned by film and comedy star Stan Laurel and acquired by Blackpool Council will also be on view.
Items will also be showcased from Blackpool Council’s The Blackpool Tower and Winter Gardens Archive – the largest collection of entertainment history in the town exploring its 125 year circus history with posters and incredible photographs.
Cllr Simon Blackburn, Blackpool Council Leader said:
“Everyone who has worked so hard to make the Showtown dream a reality is so excited as we announce and reveal more details about this fantastic project.
“Showtown will join other iconic attractions in the town and will celebrate Blackpool’s rich heritage and its unique place in the nation’s heart.
“At the centre of the attraction’s new identity is a bright and distinctive logo and brand. The name itself and the strapline ‘The museum of fun and entertainment’ really reflects the spirit and aim of the museum which is to engage local residents and visitors through fun, laughter and stories, sharing what makes Blackpool special.
“A huge thanks goes out to all the council officers, volunteers, supporters and funders who have driven forward and supported this project which will be enjoyed by hundreds of thousands of residents and visitors alike.”
David Renwick, Director, England, North at The National Lottery Heritage Fund, said:
“Blackpool is famed for its glittering Illuminations, the thrills and spills at the Pleasure Beach and the fancy footwork seen in the Tower Ballroom, so Showtown is an incredibly fitting name for the museum, celebrating the seaside town’s heritage. We’re incredibly proud that The National Lottery Heritage Fund have invested in the development of the museum to showcase Blackpool’s prominent position in British popular culture, as well as being a beacon for the town’s cultural regeneration.”