Memories of Stanley Park

We’re seeking your memories of Stanley Park for our 90th Summer Celebration in 2017.  These will be used as a feature during the event and may be published in local newspapers such as the Gazette.

If you have a long cherished memory of Stanley Park and wish to share it please write it in the comment box at the bottom of the page.

Alternatively you can write to our Chairman and we’ll publish it for you.   E-mail our Chairman click here

Stanley Park Blackpool Italian Gardens August 2016
Stanley Park Italian Gardens August 2016

All comments are moderated to ensure the site is safe for all readers.  They will appear below when approved.

Only your name will be shown below.  Any e-mail addresses submitted will only be used to contact you in relation to your recollection.

Keith Webster sent us the photograph below.  Any guesses at the date?

Stanley Park Lake date unknown. Courtesy Keith Webster
Stanley Park Lake date unknown. Courtesy Keith Webster

Link to 90th Summer Celebration Page



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  1. Annette Haley-Boccaccio

    I’ve been coming to Stanley Park for over 55 years! My flipflops are in that lake. I remember when I was about 10 or 11 swimming in the part where the anglers fish on the side where the band stand is. My feet got stuck in the sludge at the bottom of the lake and I had a struggle to get them out. I managed but lost my flipflops and had to walk home barefoot. I’m pretty sure they’ll have rotted away by now 50 odd years later! I used to love the big slide and the umbrella in the playground. That was way before health and safety spoilt childrens’ fun. My sister and I, and our friends, used to squeeze through the turnstile in the clock tower and climb to the top. You had to pay to get up but we never had money so sneaked in that way. We must have been so skinny! I climbed up a few years ago when they had an open day and the view from up there is stunning! I think they should reopen the turnstile but don’t worry I wouldn’t fit through the bars now. I brought my children when they were youngsters and have lots of old cine film and photos of them enjoying everything the park has to offer. If I had Grand children they’d be visiting with me, but I only have my dog so I bring her as often as I can. She loves the big field and having a nice wander around the park. I love to take photos and feed the little birds and squirrels. I’ve watched my future daughter in law sing on the band stand and been to the dog show each year. Stanley park is the Jewel in Blackpool’s crown and we are so fortunate to have our wonderful park!

  2. Sonia Morris

    The first and last time at Stanley Park was in 1963/4. Our little boy was 3 or 4 years old ( he is now 57!) There was some sort of play area with life size tins of food; baked beans etc and Alan played in them. It was a lovely, sunny day and there was a beautiful floral display. I have a video with Alan playing there and one of these days I’ll have another look at it!

  3. Harry Hulme

    Growing up in Blackpool in the 50s and 60s we had an enormous front garden to play in – ‘the Prom’, and an equally large back garden- ‘The Park’. On the days when we chose to play in the latter, unsupervised of course, we would head for the café where we would discuss the boundaries for Hide and Seek. Typically, it would be something like “no going past the Lions (south), the Crazy Golf (east)or the Cricket Ground wall (west)” and then we’d rapidly disperse leaving whoever was ‘it’ to count to 100, loudly. That game could last for hours sometimes! (In case you’re wondering, the northern boundary took care of itself with the Park perimeter). I favoured climbing a tree near the Floral Clock. Often, it would evolve into a different game as the evening wore on – avoid the ‘Parkie’!
    My old school, Revoe, held its annual Sports Day there in the early 60s (porobably still does!) and Stan Mortensen presented the trophies in 1961, the year my big brother Ken competed. My turn came in 64 when I came 2nd in the 100yards but got a special mention on the loudspeaker for running with an arm in plaster (broken wrist).
    As the 60s drew to a close the Park gave us football and tennis to expend our energy – I played for Sunday Alliance teams variously based there and well remember mudbath pitches and bullet grade hailstones!
    More sedate pastimes held my interest in the 80s and 90s – the wonderful, steamy conservatories – no longer an alternative Hide and Seek venue, but somewhere to admire exotic plants and have a rest.
    This last decade has seen me regularly wheeling my ailing mum from her house on West Park Drive along to the main gates, up to the cafe for an alcohol laced ‘La Mumba’ – her favourite treat – and then for a sit down and natter in the old ‘Blind Garden’ (now ‘Memorial Garden’). Almost every time, mum would ask me what the tall construction was in the distance. I’d always answer “That’s Blackpool Tower Mum” as if it was the first time she’d ever asked. Mum’s gone now, so have the Conservatories and the Parkie, but there are still schools celebrating their Sports Days, Lions guarding our play area, boats chugging across the lake and, if I concentrate very hard, I think I still see little kids meeting by the cafe to discuss game rules.

  4. alan

    Nothing comes close to falling in love at First Sight. It happened to me in Stanley Park at the Boating Pool. I must have been 12. My Mum & Dad regularly came to Blackpool for holidays & I loved it & still do. They arranged to meet with a family my Dads workmate there on holiday at the same time who had a daughter same age as me.I knew we were going to meet them & fantasised would’nt it be strange if I Fell in Love Immediately? I did. Still think of her. I am now 66 & had a great life. Hope she has too.

  5. Tom Latham

    Summer is coming and these pictures are spot on how I remember Stanley Park. London has its Big Ben, but we have always had our own elegant Big Stan. One of my fondest memories was in 1963 on one particular gorgeous Sunday afternoon in my late teens when the park was crowded, but even with so many people it always seemed to have that feel of quietness about it. I was with my beautiful and wonderful late friend Joyce Kelly who gave me so much confidence in life when I needed it. I loved and adored her with all my heart,but we were not compatible romantically, she was quite a few years my senior. Joyce worked in the clerical department of Express Cleaners and I at the Butchers Shop. We went everywhere together. We were looking forward to a nice week-end and surely got one. We were out early that day and had brought sandwiches along with a flask of tea.We placed our mackintosh square over the grass, then a large towel over that and stretched out. I had brought along my KB Transistor Radio, no ear-phones for me in those days and no mobile phones either, thank goodness. I tuned into the BBC light programme, “The time in Britain is twelve noon,in Germany it’s one o’clock,but home and away it’s time for “Two-Way Family Favourites” remember that, Sunday ritual ? I do,every week,never missed) with its memorable signature tune “With a Song in my Heart” I loved the voice of Jean Metcalfe who had compared the show for many years before. Anyway, back to my story. As I lay there listening, someone had requested the song “Roll out those lazy hazy crazy days of Summer” I have never ever forgotten the moment, my eyes closed, the warm sun on my face and Joyce by my side,with myself singing along with Nat King Cole that happy summer song. It was truly “Unforgettable” (thats what you are) but then someone from a far shattering the moment by shouting out, not to turn the music down,but “turn it up” very happy times…Dedicated to Joyce Kelly (I have been writing about you to-day)………Footnote……..I won, first place for running in the 200 yards at the annual Tyldesley Boys School sports at Stanley Park…But from this photo the game of the day is, “Anyone for Tennis” ? (first published in Facebook Group ‘History of Blackpool’)

  6. Pat Ward

    We grew up on Mereside and we often walked to Stanley Park as a family (mum, dad and seven children!) and spent the day enjoying the playpark and lake. Such happy days!

  7. Jane Littlewood

    I remember vividly sitting on the steps around the bandstand on red hot summer days in the 1970s, watching rock bands play in the bandstand. I’m sure that I remember paddling in the fountain too… don’t know whether that’s right. We always came to Stanley Park when we were on holiday in Blackpool. We used to walk from our flat on Alfred Street and to a little pair of legs it seemed like a very long way – I always remember passing the shops on Devonshire Road. Happy days 🙂

  8. David Watson

    Living nearer Preston in the 60s I recall a special trip with a friends parents to Stanley Park and had a great time rowing on the lake. There is a recollection of a big boat that carried a lot of passengers and you had to keep out of its way. I’ve never seen or heard of it since we moved nearer Blackpool and visit the park more regularly and am never sure if it’s an exaggerated memory.

  9. Kate Cartwright

    My parents taking us on the boats around the lake. Playing on the park. Ice cream in Summer. Safely picnicking with friends when I was young. As a teenager cartwheeling on the bowling greens! The first time I saw the turtles in the lake. Watching the Squirrel Man. The Classic car day. Taking my children to the park with their bikes when they were little. Playing with my children on the new park. The Swan family on the lake. St. Georges day parade with Scouts. Enjoying the Park as a family, we love the music in the Summer, a fabulous place for social gatherings.

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