History of Blackpool - growth and decline.

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History of Blackpool

Blackpool’s Growth up to the 1950’s

For the majority of the 19th century Blackpool was a small fishing village, which received small numbers of upper class visitors who came due to the supposed healing capabilities of the coast, and it's fresh air. This changed in 1846 with the creation of a railway line going up to Blackpool, which made travel to the area cheap and affordable for the public. The majority of those who decided to visit Blackpool were factory workers and their families who came from cities like Liverpool and Manchester. Due to air travel being very expensive at the time and only the rich could afford to go abroad. Blackpool became the destination to go to for the working class during their holidays. Blackpool recognised their popularity and over the years constructed three new piers to house new attractions. Three new piers were constructed, named the North, Central and South Piers and were constructed in 1863, 1868 and 1893 respectively. The Winter Gardens, which was effectively an indoor mall, was set up in 1878 and housed an opera house and a theatre. The Blackpool Illuminations, which were put up a year later, and the Blackpool Tower, built in 1894, which housed a Ballroom, Circus Hall and an Aquarium, accompanied this. Due to all these attractions Blackpool became a major tourist destination. In 1930 7 million tourists came to the area and this number increased to 17 million in 1950.

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Blackpool’s Decline

Blackpool began to enter its decline period during the mid 20th century onwards. During this time the disposable income and free time of workers started to increase. This combined with cheaper air flight tickets and package holidays meant that people could go abroad for the first time in their lives. France and Spain were the most popular destinations and over the years started to gain more and more tourists. This took away from the number of people visiting Blackpool. As an attempt to claw back tourists hotels and restaurants in the area started to dramatically decrease ...

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