In a highly symbolic move the Lancashire resort of Blackpool is preparing to become the UK’s staycation capital by ushering in the return of deckchairs to the Lancashire resort’s beaches after a 10-year absence.
The Lancashire resort scrapped its hire service in 2011 subsequently selling its stock of 6,000 chairs three years later. As the country gears up for an explosion of domestic tourism the seaside tradition is poised to make a comeback with the council offering a space to an operator to run two pitches on the promenade, north of Central Pier.
“I can’t think of anything nicer than sitting in a deckchair watching the world go by on a sunny day,” said Claire Smith, president of hoteliers group StayBlackpool. “There are days when the sun is out but the tide is in so you can’t go on the beach. So having deckchairs on the prom is ideal.
“We have seen beach huts have a resurgence and I think deckchairs could be the same.”
The new licensee would be offered two pitches on the promenade just north of Central Pier, with the licence expected to run from July until November.
The operator would be able to hire out deckchairs between 8am and 8pm seven days a week, on the condition that the site had staff in attendance, and kept the area clean.
If successful, the operator would also be granted the license for April to November 2022.
It’s hoped that a deckchair revival will follow the resurgence being enjoyed in the use and popularity of beach huts. Blackpool is well placed to claim the title of the UK’s Staycation Capital with visitor numbers rising consistently. An estimated 18 million holidaymakers enjoyed a break in the resort town in 2019.