November 21, 2020 12:01:00 AM
The Blackpool Tower Ballroom has received £764,000 from the Government as part of its support package for the arts.
The famous ballroom dancing venue, which first opened to the public in 1894, is receiving the cash injection as part of the £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund.
The money will be used to pay for repair work to the ballroom’s plasterwork ceiling.
Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said: “The Blackpool Tower Ballroom has been an iconic home for British dance for more than a century.
“The Culture Recovery Fund will help restore this beautiful ballroom so that it can be enjoyed for generations to come.”
The venue, which is famous for hosting ballroom events, has played host to the BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing in recent years.
Shirley Ballas, a judge on the celebrity dancing programme, said: “Blackpool holds a special place in the heart of every ballroom dancer all over the world.
“It is a town steeped in ballroom dance history and somewhere everyone hopes to dance one day.
“For me, I won my three British Professional Latin Championships in Blackpool, titles that I cherish.
“I am overjoyed to learn of the Government’s investment to aid in the restoration of one of Blackpool’s historic ballrooms, all of which house the memories and history of the ballroom dance industry.”
Duncan Wilson, chief executive of heritage organisation Historic England, said: “Blackpool Tower Ballroom has played a hugely significant role in the history and popular culture of our country for over 125 years, as a landmark in British seaside architecture and tourism, to the special place it holds in the nation’s heart as the iconic venue for TV’s Strictly Come Dancing.
“In these challenging times, our shared heritage is more important than ever.
“This vital funding will allow essential repairs to take place, proving employment for skilled craft workers and ensuring that we preserve this much-loved ballroom for everyone to enjoy, both now and in the future.”