21 incredible pictures as Blackpool Tower Ballroom gets ready to reopen after lockdown following refurbishment

Blackpool Tower’s world-famous ballroom is being prepared to reopen to the public with a £1.1 million refurbishment.

Saturday, 15th May 2021, 4:55 am
Project manager Keith Langton viewing the entire space of the Blackpool Tower Ballroom which is covered in scaffolding during its restoration
Project manager Keith Langton viewing the entire space of the Blackpool Tower Ballroom which is covered in scaffolding during its restoration

Dancers hope to be allowed back into the venue on June 21, but in the meantime the ballroom has undergone its most extensive programme of work and deep-cleaning for more than 60 years.

They have dedicated more than 21,000 hours over a period of six months, each climbing an average of 85 flights of scaffolding every day, to restore the ballroom to its original glory.
A team of highly skilled craftsmen are hard at work on the ballroom, who have worked on projects including the Queen’s Gallery at Buckingham Palace

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The team, led by ornamental plasterwork specialists Hayles and Howe, also found signatures under murals showing the last time anyone was in the space was 1957.
Project manager Keith Langton said: “This really is something else. It is a project I will never forget – and perhaps even a project for me to retire on.
The ballroom, which usually hosts an annual Strictly Come Dancing special, has been closed for 12 months due to the pandemic
“Everyone wants to end their career on a high, and I don’t think I could get a better high than working at the ballroom.”
The tower’s general manager, Kenny Mew, said he could not wait to reopen.
It is the longest it has been shut since 1957, when a fire caused severe damage and required 17 months of work for repairs.
He said: “The works which have been carried out really are something very special. This is a once in a lifetime project that I feel incredibly fortunate to have been involved in.
“We cannot wait to reopen our doors and invite the public to experience the splendour of the Blackpool Tower Ballroom first-hand"
"whether they are taking to the dancefloor, enjoying afternoon tea or simply taking in the incredible surroundings."
The work on the period plasterwork ceiling has been made possible thanks to a grant of £764,000
The grant was part of the Government’s Culture Recovery Fund, together with funding from Blackpool Council.
Tamsin Cooke, projects officer at Historic England, said: “It really is incredible to see the work which has gone on here"
"Which is exactly as it would have been carried out when the ballroom was built all those years ago, those traditional methods are still being used today."
“This is a very historical moment for Blackpool.”
The Blackpool Tower Ballroom, located in the Grade 1 Listed Blackpool Tower, is hoping to re-open on June 21.
A team of over 30 specialists on site, working a combined 21,000 hours.
During work to angel figures on the ceiling of the ballroom, which first opened in 1894, workers discovered newspapers dating back to 1911, old cigarette packs and even a walking stick, believed to date back to the 1950s.
Skilled craftspeople working daily in tiny roof spaces to inspect and restore the ornate plasterwork from behind the ceiling.