Category Archives: Latest News

Historic Hat-trick

Blackpool’s 1969/70 season penultimate game saw them play rivals, Preston North End, at Deepdale. The ‘pool team knew that a victory would return them to the First Division. The away side did not disappoint, forward Fred Pickering netted all three goals to take ‘The Seasiders’ up, sending North End to Division Three.

A stalwart of the promotion winning team from 51 years ago was Dave Hatton, with 251 league appearances and seven goals during his seven years at Bloomfield Road. Former defender, Hatton, recently recalled the euphoric evening at Deepdale “There was always a real rivalry about playing Preston, we felt we could beat them, but it was always tight. There was a full house making lots of noise, but we didn’t give anything away. Pickering got the first goal after 16 minutes, easing the tension slightly. We seemed to get more of the ball and Pickering got another one. It was 2–0 at half time, they had to come at us. We never really felt as a defence that they could do it and we had it sussed out already. As the game progressed, they made more mistakes and then Pickering got the third goal, it was game over. We finished up easy winners at 3-0.”

After the euphoric win at Preston and celebratory beers in the changing room, the team returned for further revelry at The Lemon Tree, Squires Gate. Hatton remembered late evening, “The club booked us a meal there for about 11 o’clock. We were all together at a big, long table but what time I got home I don’t know!” It proved a highly enjoyable night of celebration for the Blackpool staff and players. Promotion had been attained with one league game to spare. The visit to Oxford United five days later proved to be anti-climactic when Blackpool were defeated 2–0. 

Hatton recounted his teammates from the promotion winning side with considerable fondness, “When I moved here, Bill Bentley lived on the same estate, and we became very good friends. He was a good player with a great left peg on him. Jim Armfield was the nicest fellow, always a gentleman and a quick fullback. Tommy Hutchison was a nightmare to play against in training, I always thought he was brilliant, and he was great at beating players. Hutchison could hold onto the ball, you couldn’t get it off him, but his crosses weren’t the best and he didn’t score a lot of goals, but he would always be in my side.”

45 years after Hatton departed Blackpool for Bury, his affection for the tangerine team remains undiminished. He continues to reside on the Fylde Coast and enjoys visits to Bloomfield Road to watch the current team in action. Hatton remains proud of the part he played in helping his adopted town’s team gain promotion. The victorious evening in Preston five decades ago when two headed goals and a tap into complete Pickering’s hat-trick are key moments in ‘The Seasiders’ history. It proved to be a highly successful debut season for Hatton who remains a modest and highly likeable Boltonian.

The FPA is currently being re-established in the wake of new Club ownership and the lifting of lockdown restrictions.  The association will receive not only the full support of Blackpool Football Club, it will work closely with the various departments within it.

It is the intention to make the former players feel very much part of the Club’s history and its future. There will be opportunities for social gatherings both on match days and other arranged events such as golf days and bi – monthly meetings. The FPA will also be a key organiser and supporter of local charity events as well as giving assistance to former Blackpool players where it is required. 

The association is very keen to recruit new members and is free to join. Application forms and further details can be obtained from John Cross by email or phone 07984 940879.

While you are here

Blackpool FC School Half Term Round-Up

Blackpool FC School has completed its first-ever half-term! Since the opening of the school in September the students have been very busy, here’s a roundup from the Head of School, Miss Trickett, of what they’ve been up so far this academic year.

As we approach the end of the first half term, I would like to take this opportunity to thank the students, staff, parents, and our partner schools for their continued support in making Blackpool FC School a success. Our vision was to open an alternative provision for local students in Years 10 and 11 who struggle in a mainstream setting and who show a keen interest in sport and physical activity. This vision has now become reality as we were granted independent school status by the Department for Education. We have been fully supported by local schools and have made great strides in supporting some of the most vulnerable youngsters in the town, offering them full-time education in a safe and supported environment.

I am delighted with the way our students have settled in and the progress that has been made in such a short space of time, and I’m proud of how they have represented the school on numerous trips and educational visits.
During the first half term, we have visited the National Football Museum in Manchester, we learnt about the history of the beautiful game and had the privilege of seeing Sir Stanley Matthews’ FA Cup Final shirt, as well as the medal from 1953 when Blackpool FC beat Bolton Wanderers 4-3.

In the first week of term, we were visited by the commando rugby school. Students were given an insight into life in the army and had opportunities to build survival shelters, make hot drinks using only a few items and most importantly how to work as a team and be resilient when things are not always going your way. This was a full day out of a classroom environment where they had to call on several skills learnt in the classroom including maths and science.

As a school, we are passionate about embedding strong foundations and values for all our students’ future achievements and success. We recognise that every student is an individual and celebrate this through personalised, inspiring, authentic learning experiences.

We aim to offer young people a chance to shine and help find their way back into long term education and employment. To help support this and each student we offer a very hands-on holistic approach to teaching the curriculum. With this in mind, we organised six visits to a local construction apprenticeship provider, Unique Training Group. Here students learnt the art of tiling, joinery, bricklaying, and plumbing. Many of our students excelled and were offered opportunities to return on an apprenticeship when they are 16.

One student said,” I love coming to Blackpool FC School, as the class sizes are smaller than at school, so it helps me to concentrate, plus we do lots of practical activities, which helps me learn better”.

After the half-term break, we have set up some local educational trips to learn about the history of Blackpool for our project-based learning as well as a visit to the cenotaph and war memorial gardens to pay our respects to our war heroes. We have also teamed up with the Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service and Blackpool Council who are going to deliver workshops around ‘wasted lives’ and awareness of domestic abuse to women.

Community Cohesion: One Year On

We have now delivered our Community Cohesion strand for over one year and during this time the team has made a huge impact on the lives of young people across Blackpool. We caught up with Brett, Community Cohesion Manager, to see how the last year has been.

How has the last year been?

The pandemic has provided a challenge for everyone and has meant that programmes and staff have had to adapt their delivery in order to continue supporting people. Due to the targeted and one-to-one nature of the work within Community Cohesion, we have been one of the luckier teams as government guidelines have allowed us to continue with our normal delivery. However, some of our sessions moved online when young people were isolating, or parents didn’t feel comfortable leaving the house during periods of lockdown. The pandemic has allowed us to improve our knowledge of online delivery and provided us with new ways to engage with people, most notably via games consoles such as XBOX and PlayStation where staff can now deliver mentoring sessions online whilst playing sports-based games such as FIFA against participants.

What has been your proudest moment so far?

The proudest part of my role is seeing how passionate the team are about supporting their participants. They are genuinely invested in improving lives and achieving positive outcomes for those they work with. Staff are visibly excited and proud when a young person or an adult achieves one of their goals and/or access positive pathways. For example, we have had participants join grassroots football clubs, gain employment and complete qualifications.

Recently, some of our young people who have completed the Tower Above programme were rewarded for their hard work and commitment and taken to their first ever Blackpool FC game by members of the team. The smiles on their faces and the feedback we got from parents was fantastic and further highlights the amazing work the team and wider Trust do, connecting people with the club and providing them with positive experiences and memories for life. Some of our participants and their families have now purchased season tickets as a result of their affiliation with the Trust and how much they have enjoyed working with us.

How has Cohesion expanded?

The Community Cohesion strand has expanded greatly over the year, despite a global pandemic, we have employed more staff within the team and added more programmes to our portfolio. We now have a wide range of programmes that support both young people and adults with a key focus on crime prevention and reduction (see previous page). Our most recent venture, Project ADDER, has allowed us to work alongside a variety of partners involved in the town-wide project, to play our part in supporting people at risk of drug related deaths. This has allowed us to add another level of expertise within the team by employing specialist staff with an experience of working within this field and strengthening the knowledge and experience across the Community Cohesion team.

What are your aims for the future?

We aim to continue delivering our programmes to a high standard, ensuring that we can evidence the great work that is taking place, therefore sustaining the work long term. One of our main aims across all of the Cohesion programmes is to support people to access positive pathways, rather than the programme coming to an end with no next steps or plan in place for the individual. We are really lucky at the Trust to have so many wonderful programmes/exit routes to support people to transition into i.e. Traineeship, Kicks, Get Set 2 Go, BTEC, Degree and NCS, to name a few. By engaging with one or more of these, participants can continue to put into practice the positive changes they have made on our programmes. We have also formed some great links with external community providers such as local grassroots clubs, youth clubs and volunteering groups, where we have then been able to facilitate introductions for our participants to join/attend. In the future, we hope to see more of this taking place with more people completing our programmes, sustaining a positive change in their behaviour and going on to access other provision. 

Any ‘thankyou’s’?

I would like to thank all of the wonderful partners that we work alongside who have supported myself, the team and all of the participants we’ve worked with. As a team, we place great emphasis on partnership working and by working in this way we have been able to achieve some fantastic outcomes for a variety of young people and adults across the range of programmes we deliver.

Finally, a huge thankyou to my amazing team who make a difference to the lives of young people and adults in Blackpool on a daily basis. Without their hard work and professionalism, the programmes would not be as successful as they have been so far. Long may this brilliant work continue!

Quotes from our community who have benefited from community cohesion provision:

He’s like a different boy. I don’t know what you have said to him, but it seems to have really worked” – Tower Above parent

“It has given X life choices and prepared him for making the right choices throughout his life” – School SENCO.

“X has maintained making the right choices and will finish the year on a positive note – School SENCO.

“He can actually have a conversation with adults now which he couldn’t really do before. It’s made him more sociable, kinder and he’s standing up to his issues and dealing with them” – Tower Above parent

“Thank you so much for helping me get homed, I really appreciate it. I’m really interested in doing some boxing in the future” – DIVERT participant

“I have woke up excited instead of feeling annoyed and excited” – Tower Above young person

>> For more information about Community Cohesion <<

Class of the term: Unstoppable

What is Unstoppable?

Unstoppable is a Year 6 PSHE programme tackling age appropriate, relevant issues such as gang culture and knife crime, healthy relationships in and out of the home, resilience, emotional well-being, and transition. The programme is executed using a fictional novel of the same name, written by decorated author Dan Freedman.

Unstoppable is a six-week project that asks the class to read to a certain part in the book and then a Blackpool FC Community Trust tutor delivers an hour lesson, on a weekly basis, using the story lines and characters from the book. As part of the programme, each child is provided with a copy of the novel and a workbook to keep. Over the academic year, the programme is offered to all Year 6 children with approximately 1700 children taking part.   


Over the last six weeks Stanley Primary School has taken part in Blackpool FC Community Trust’s PSHE programme Unstoppable. Throughout the Autumn term the children of Stanley have stood out as excellent participants, not only for their behavior but also their understanding of the book and the programme. The behaviour of the children has been amazing, as all the children have shown extremely high levels of respect and exceptional manners during each of the sessions. Their level of maturity was shown through the discussions held both between themselves and feeding back to the class and tutors.  The children were clearly engaged and focused on the lessons; they were able to debate their own opinions respectfully and take on board others’ points of view. 

Furthermore, the classes were able to follow the pace of the programme delivery, by reading to set learning breaks throughout the whole programme. The children displayed an understanding of the deeper meanings of the story and how they would feel if they were in any of the characters’ positions. The children have been able to have extremely mature conversations regarding some of the sensitive topics which are covered within the story. Even though these topics, including grief, friendships and gangs, were hard for some to talk about, with guidance from the BFCCT tutor, all engaged in the conversations and had a mature outlook on the scenarios.  

The engagement of the children was shown through their quiz results, with 78% of children showing an improvement in the knowledge and understanding of PSHE related questions. 100% of the teachers rated the engagement of the children as excellent, and also stated that the English lessons were supported through the delivery of Unstoppable. 

The children have been able to highlight the reasons why the characters are acting in certain ways but then also relate this to their real lives and knew what was appropriate and inappropriate when looking at different relationships, friendships, and interactions with people in their lives. 

Some of the children completed a small focus group with the staff to discuss the programme and what they have enjoyed about both the story and the lessons. All the quotes below were taken from this focus group (clearly highlighting that children focused on different concepts):

It’s (the programme) has helped me to be a bit better because I used to be a bit naughty and that and I used to get really angry and moody, and now I’ve changed and I’m not really as moody as I don’t really get as angry, and I have become calmer”

“Learning that just because she (Roxy) is in a wheelchair, she is still the same person and can do the same things as she was before”

“I know if someone came up to me and offered me something dangerous, I would say no and go home and tell my mum straight away”

“Helped me see how things can change and deal with them in my real life like going to high school is next year and I’m very sad”

Their teachers also noted that: 

“The programme was even able to engage children who aren’t keen on reading as the story is so exciting to them, they are asking to read it”

“Some very mature conversations have been brought out from this”

Unstoppable Class of the Term Reward:

Due to the enthusiasm and mature attitudes of the children, the Stanley classes were awarded the Unstoppable Class of the Term and as a reward, Dan Freedman hosted a question-and-answer session for all the pupils that had taken part in the programme. Dan gave the children a brief introduction into how he became an author and then the children proceeded to ask questions. 

Dan Freedman noted that:

“Their questions were absolutely fantastic – some of the most fresh and fun I’ve been asked. I was incredibly moved and proud to see how they had connected with the story and characters of Unstoppable.”

“I’m delighted that the book is in the safe hands of BFCCT to use it as a platform for really important conversations with young people and it was clear today that the pupils had put some very deep thought into those subjects and issues.”

When asked what they thought of the event, the children said:

“It was a lot of fun to talk to Dan and find out what made him want to write the story”

“I am really excited to see if the book does become a TV show”

“He has inspired me to think about reading and writing more as I think I would like to be an author”

The teachers were extremely positive regarding the event: 

“The children have been looking forward to this for the past few weeks”

“He was fantastic with the students, and you could tell they were all engaged”

Well done Stanley Primary School, the Unstoppable team have thoroughly enjoyed working with the children and hope to continue to do so in the future. 

Each term The Unstoppable team will be choosing a class to receive a reward. The class will be chosen based upon the enthusiasm, engagement and behaviour of the children. As we have 30 schools receiving the Unstoppable programme this academic year, the competition may be tough.  

Fit2Glow Festival in partnership with Lightpool Festival

Last week Blackpool FC Community Trust re-ignited our partnership with Blackpool Lightpool Festival to host our third Fit2Glow Football Festival.

Held at the fantastic indoor facilities at Stanley Park Sports Centre, 11 mixed Year 2 teams from 11 Blackpool schools stepped into the darkness to take part in the unique event.

After so many months away from inter-school events, it was emphasised that the festival was focused on fun and fairness and embracing the opportunity for pupils to compete with their peers. Players wore their brightly coloured team bibs and matching fluorescent headbands and wristbands to ensure that even though the lights were out they could still spot their teammates.

Over the 1 ½ hour session, the teams played multiple games testing their dribbling, turning and shooting on the mini 5 a-side pitches, lit up by neon markings and ultraviolet lights provided by Blackpool Illumination Team. The event saw lots of goals scored, and even more smiles as the children relaxed and enjoyed the ‘new way’ to play football.

Marc Joseph – Blackpool FC Community Trust

“The Trust has been waiting a long time to get back to hosting these fantastic events, that give the children opportunities they would probably never experience again. Seeing school children running around and having fun makes the preparation worthwhile. We have worked with the Lightpool Festival for a number of years now, and as a Trust, we want to use this event to highlight the amazing events that run during the Blackpool Illuminations”.

Mr Fogg – Norbreck Academy

The Norbreck children loved the event. Although initially apprehensive, they thoroughly enjoyed the new experience of playing football, in the dark. The event was really well organised, Covid safe, and ran smoothly. We look forward to participating in the Fit2Glow Festival again next year.

JOB OPPORTUNITY: Physical Education Officer

Due to a current member of the Premier League Primary Stars team gaining promotion within the organisation, we are looking for someone to join the Community Trust as part of the established Primary Stars team. We are looking for a PE Officer to work in the PE landscape of local primary schools, supporting teachers in delivering high-quality PE lessons that ultimately benefit the pupils. This is achieved through 1 to 1 support and delivering a range of workshops.

Blackpool FC Community Trust is the official charity of Blackpool FC, based at Bloomfield Road Stadium. Working with residents as young as 2 years old up to adults in the later stages of life, BFCCT provide a diverse range of programmes to increase social inclusion opportunities; improve physical fitness, health and education; and lessen involvement in anti-social behaviour.

In recent years the Trust has grown significantly and has become an established organisation, providing something for everybody, that every Blackpool FC fan and resident should be involved in and very proud of.


Once completed please send your application to or post it to:

Blackpool FC Community Trust, F.A.O. Chris Debar, Bloomfield Road Stadium, Seasiders Way, Blackpool. FY1 6JJ.

This job will be subject to satisfactory references and enhanced DBS procedures.

We encourage early applicants as we reserve the right to close the application process at any time.

Closing date: Friday 26th November 2021 12pm

JOB OPPORTUNITY: Health and Wellbeing Officer

Blackpool FC Community Trust has a very exciting opportunity for someone to join the very successful Health and Wellbeing team, working on our healthy lifestyle programmes and mental health provisions delivered in local primary schools and nurseries supporting families in the community, while also supporting with delivery on our multi-sports camps.

Blackpool FC Community Trust is the official charity of Blackpool FC, based at Bloomfield Road Stadium. Working with residents as young as 2 years old up to adults in the later stages of life, BFCCT provide a diverse range of programmes to increase social inclusion opportunities; improve physical fitness, health and education; and lessen involvement in anti-social behaviour.

In recent years the Trust has grown significantly and has become an established organisation, providing something for everybody, that every Blackpool FC fan and resident should be involved in and very proud of.


Once completed please send your application to or post it to:

Blackpool FC Community Trust, F.A.O. Marc Joseph, Bloomfield Road Stadium, Seasiders Way, Blackpool. FY1 6JJ.

This job will be subject to satisfactory references and enhanced DBS procedures.

We encourage early applicants as we reserve the right to close the application process at any time.

Closing date: Tuesday 30th November 2021 5pm

Blackpool VS PNE – Events

Ahead of the big game this weekend, we are delighted to share with you two events that we have scheduled for next week that will look back at the famous Blackpool v PNE fixture. We can’t confirm who it will be, but we will also have a special guest at each event to answer a few questions. 

These events will both take place at Bloomfield Road in the Education & Community Centre (former ticket office) and will be free to attend, although booking is essential and places are limited.

Tuesday 26th October, 6-7.30pm BOOK NOW

Friday 29th October 1-3pm BOOK NOW

Please feel free to share with anyone who you think would benefit or enjoy attending or email for more information


Summer 2021 Holiday, Activity and Food Programme

This Summer, in partnership with Blackpool Council, Blackpool FC Community Trust has continued to support families across the town with access to free activities and healthy meals.

The Blackpool Holiday Activity and Food programme (HAF) is a government-funded programme that has supported 1376 young people through seven providers of the programme with 85.5% of participants being children on free school meals (FSM) and 14.5% being targeted through other vulnerabilities. The HAF programme is dedicated to supporting children and families during the Easter, Summer and Christmas school holidays, this Summer 347 sessions were delivered to children and young people. This programme aims to deliver engaging activities, provide health and nutrition information and free healthy meals each day to the participants. Although guidance for Summer recommended the programme ran for 4 hours, 4 days a week, over 4 weeks, many providers extended this service to support the overwhelming need in the town.

Blackpool FC Community Trust were selected to coordinate the Blackpool HAF programme and we worked in partnership with several other third sector and public service organisations to fulfil the aims of the programme across Blackpool. Our months of planning provided the partners with an extensive programme of delivery that utilised local parks, schools, beaches, and attractions to give the participants some amazing experiences on their doorstep. 

These were combined with residential trips in some of the most picturesque parts of the Lancashire countryside where children learned new skills and rediscovered their sense of adventure. We used our expertise and local knowledge to design unique experiences for our participants with a health and activities theme running through them. 

In addition to coordinating the HAF programme, Blackpool FC Community Trust also lead seven HAF holiday camps, providing a service focused on keeping children active through multi-sports games and play activities. Including a high school football offer based at PlayFootball and a SEND specific group offer at Bloomfield Road, where participants were able to play, craft and dance in the recently developed activity spaces in the North Stand. 

As part of the 2021 Summer HAF programme Blackpool FC Community Trust provided 278 participants, 94% of which were on FSM, with engaging activities through our Kicks sessions, Inclusion Camp and Sports Camp. Our sessions involve a multitude of activities from varied sports including football, hockey, and table tennis to a range of art and crafts activities for children with a creative nature. We hosted themed days for the children including, a mini-Olympic competition with several races, as well as completing fitness video workouts with Joe Wicks. As rewards, we provided the children with vouchers to Ascent trampoline Park and Blackpool Pleasure Beach.

Our Head of Early Years and Primary programmes said, “The summer HAF Programme is has been an amazing example of what can be achieved with partners that see the benefit of supporting families through the school holidays. Being able to offer activities that enhance social engagement, form friendship groups, and promote health and wellbeing values ultimately improves the lives of the participants. As a Trust, we are extremely proud to have engaged with over 200 children and young people on FSM over 600 hours of activities’’

To evaluate the success of our summer HAF provisions we conducted parent and participant surveys, we were overwhelmed with the positive feedback we received, one parent said, “The team are fantastic, and the kids loved their time there. I would like to say a huge thank you to everyone involved.” 100% of participants reported enjoying themselves at camp and the same amount said they made new friends during the sessions.

JOB OPPORTUNITY: Active through Football Project Manager

In partnership with the Football Foundation and Sport England, you will be our Project Manager and point of contact for our Active Through Football (ATF) programme. The ATF programme’s main purpose is to increase activity levels and create sustained behaviour change, to do this you will work with residents in a targeted area of Blackpool. Working in collaboration with the consortium of local and regional partners (Active Blackpool, Lancashire FA, Blackpool Public Health, Active Lancashire) as part of this role you will provide progress updates over the duration of the project.

Blackpool FC Community Trust is the official charity of Blackpool FC, based at Bloomfield Road Stadium. Working with residents as young as 2 years old up to adults in the later stages of life, BFCCT provide a diverse range of programmes to increase social inclusion opportunities; improve physical fitness, health and education; and lessen involvement in anti-social behaviour.

In recent years the Trust has grown significantly and has become an established organisation, providing something for everybody, that every Blackpool FC fan and resident should be involved in and very proud of.


Once completed please send your application to or post it to:

Blackpool FC Community Trust, F.A.O. Jason White, Bloomfield Road Stadium, Seasiders Way, Blackpool. FY1 6JJ.

This job will be subject to satisfactory references and enhanced DBS procedures.

We encourage early applicants as we reserve the right to close the application process at any time.

Closing date: Friday 12th November 2021 5pm