Blackpool’s hosting 1,500 of the country’s most politically active pensioners for the annual, national Pensioners’ Parliament conference, has followed several national conferences coming to the resort in the past few months and justifies investment in the Winter Gardens venue, according to a Council spokesman.
The pensioners’ association first visited the resort in 1969 and has returned most years, including earlier this week for its three-day convention.
Delegates marched to the Winter Gardens complex from the Blackpool Tower, led by a jazz band.
Key issues such as care for the elderly, NHS, the Big Society and age discrimination were topics discussed at the Opera House Theatre.
Minister for Pensions Steve Webb addressed the conference and took part in a question and answer session
National Pensioners Convention spokesman Neil Duncan-Jordan said: “Blackpool has again helped us deliver a fantastic three days of passionate debate and decision-making that will have a tangible impact on the way that elderly people are viewed and treated by our society.”
“The resort also continues to be perfect for our members to enjoy the social side of our annual get-together,” he added.
Mandy Tythe-McCallum, Business Tourism Manager at VisitBlackpool, noted the resort hosted over 6,000 exercise enthusiasts in March for the International Fitness Showcase and welcomed over 4,000 young famers in May. “The fact we can also accommodate 1,500 pensioners demonstrates that we are a highly adaptable resort that can meet the needs of every type of gathering,” she said.
Councillor Graham Cain, Portfolio holder for Tourism and Culture in Blackpool, said the string of recent national conferences successfully demonstrated how the Winter Gardens had adapted to meet event organiser and business tourism needs. “Blackpool Council’s investment in the restoration of this prized building is already paying dividends,” said Cllr. Cain.
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