Friends of St Annes Palace

Friends of St Annes Palace

The Friends of St Annes Palace is a new charity creating a local Community Hub where groups and organisations can meet and integrate.

An Open Day is being held at the Palace Rooms on 7th February to launch it as a Community Hub.

Local Community Groups are invited to take a free stand to promote their organisation and to meet other groups with a view to making contacts and sharing experience or supporting events and functions.

There will be a Community Information Board in St Annes Market where groups can promote events and their work.

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The aim is that this will benefit all members of the area including the young, elderly, lonely and those who wish to help their community in any way.

There will be the opportunity to have social events and concerts at the Palace and Just Good Friends are already using the facility for their coffee mornings and have plans to hold ballroom lessons and keep-fit sessions – the possibilities are endless as the facilities are great.

The Masons who own St Annes Palace are very much in favour of this opportunity to bring the community together and the Trustees of the newly formed charity include a number of well-known members of the local business and voluntary community who are all excited and enthused about the prospect of a Community Hub.

Come along and find out more!

More about St Annes Palace

St Annes Palace is the building opposite the police station and Ashton Gardens, on the corner behind the now-closed JR Taylor department store.

This information sbout the history of the building is from the English Heritage ‘Pastscape’ website.

A much-altered former Public Hall and Assembly Rooms of two and three storeys with Queen Anne features and elevations on St George’s Road, Garden Street and St George’s Lane, that opened in 1900 and was built to a design by John Dent Harker.

It is rectangular in plan and is constructed of brick with orange moulded terracotta embellishments beneath flat and pitched slate roofs.

By 1910 the building had become a cinema and alterations to the interior layout took place in 1925 after it was bought by the Blackpool Tower Company and became the Palace Cinema and Restaurant, complete with ballroom, restaurant, cafe, assembly room, Masonic room, billiard room and shops on the ground floor fronting Garden Street.

Sometime in the inter-war years part of the building fronting St George’s Road was converted into a car showroom. Part of the building continued as a cinema until 1957 when it was sold to Lytham St Anne’s freemasons. A mezzanine floor was added in the former cinema to create rooms on a new upper floor for the freemasons.

Elsewhere a freemason’s boardroom was built on part of the flat roof, a Steward’s flat was created out of what are thought to have been former dressing rooms, the former ballroom was converted into a Masonic Lodge Room, the former billiard room in the basement had its ceiling lowered and all fixtures and fittings removed, the former car showroom was converted into a furniture retailers, the main staircase was moved to allow insertion of a lift shaft, and a large part of the ground floor was lowered and a covered market hall created.

Externally a glass and iron canopy was added in the 1980s.

Link to English Heritage Pastscape webpage about St Annes Palace 

Friends of St Annes Palace Open Day

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