Saturday, 1 December 2012

Old Blackpool Postcards

I was in town this morning as the ladies of the Little Egg Graft Company - Fran and daughter Gill - are doing a craft fair at the Winter Gardens.

I was drafted in to convey them and their goods to the Winter Gardens where they are sharing a stand with Jeannie who is selling her hand-made greetings cards. David and I went off to Quilligan's for some breakfast and then took back bacon and sausage barms for the ladies.

Then I mooched around the Dealers' Den stalls for a bit and found a few old postcards to share.

This one caught my eye first - Blackpool from an aeroplane. It shows the Tower with the Alhambra next door to the north and the Big Wheel at the Winter Gardens. The Big Wheel was demolished in 1928 but this is an earlier view - the card was posted in July 1922, postage costing one old penny.

The second shows the wrecked ship of the line HMS Foudroyant which was displayed off Blackpool's seafront as part of a fund-raising tour. Blackpool's weather did it no good at all. On 16 June 1897 a cable parted in hurricane strong winds and she dragged her remaining anchor, clipped the North Pier and beached herself to the north of the pier opposite Cocker Square.

She had acted as flagship to a number of admirals including Nelson, whose captain for a while was Thomas Hardy, destined to be Nelson's captain later on HMS Victory.

She remained on the beach for several months and was finally broken up at the end of 1897.

Regular readers will know I love these little fantasy "night" shots. Taken in broad daylight - as witness all the people on the beach - and darkened at the photographic printing stage with lights and windows painted in and a sky with a full moon - probably a coin placed on the photographic paper that became the master - added at the printing stage. For a while the Tower really did have a very strong searchlight which played over the sands and the Promenade, but the moon has never been seen so far north... Indeed the only message written on the postcard is "? moon in north"


  1. Just received my copy of 'Blackpool Then and Now' - Great photos and interesting history. Amazing how little the putting greens have changed! Best wishes, Martin North

  2. Born (1984) and bread in blackpool always looks amazing in the past wish I had seen it. Horrible now unfortunately


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