Blast From The Past

Noel Edmonds gives his creation 'Mr Blobby' a hug during the opening of Crinkley Bottom at Happy Mount Park in Morecambe in 1994.
Noel Edmonds gives his creation 'Mr Blobby' a hug during the opening of Crinkley Bottom at Happy Mount Park in Morecambe in 1994.

Five years ago: It was reported that 200 flats, a hotel, 28 houses and a new pub could still be built on the old Frontierland site.

Owners Morrisons had applied for a renewal of planning permission for a proposed ‘mixed-use’ development on the derelict former theme park. The supermarket chain was given outline permission for the scheme in 2006 but this expired in April 2009. Morrisons was searching for new developers for the site.

The Ben-my-Chree ferry completed her 15,000th sailing from Douglas to Heysham. Built by Van der Giessen de Noord in Rotterdam, at a cost of £24million, the Ben-my-Chree first sailed into Manx waters on Tynwald Day 1998. Since then she had covered more than 875,000 miles and had an impressive reliability record of over 99 per cent. The vessel had carried more than 2.5 million passengers.

Ten years ago: The sleepy town of Carnforth was awoken with a bang when three balaclava-wearing robbers burst into a bank. The drama started when the three men walked into the branch of Barclays on Market Street and demanded staff hand over the takings. They escaped in a car, driven by a fourth man, which was later found abandoned.

A police spokesman said it was believed the three men had used what looked like firearms.

This week saw the launch of a pioneering ‘water bus’ service on the Lancaster Canal, as Swiftsure, was to run between Carnforth and Lancaster. Commuters, walkers, tourists, shoppers, cyclists and many others could take advantage of this unique service. The water bus was being tested out on the canal, soon to be officially launched.

It was being run by the environmentally friendly transport charity Budgie Bikes.

Twenty years ago: Noel Edmonds’ World of Crinkley Bottom threw open its doors to thousands of Mr Blobby fans. The new theme park, based on the fantasy village featured in the BBC TV series Noel’s House Party, opened one hour late to an excited crowd drawn from all over the North West. Mr Blobby had all the children in fits of giggles within minutes of appearing and with Noel, the barmy duo cut the spotted pink and yellow ribbon.

Thousands of pounds worth of counterfeit videos and t-shirts were seized in a series of dramatic raids on Morecambe seafront traders.

Trading standards officers swooped on stalls operating on promenade forecourts. The traders, driven out of Blackpool following similar crackdowns, faced prosecution. The hunt was on to locate the video copying and t-shirt manufacturing centres which were believed to be local.

The Ben-my-Chree ferry completed her 15,000th sailing from Douglas to Heysham. Built by Van der Giessen de Noord in Rotterdam, at a cost of £24million, the Ben-my-Chree first sailed into Manx waters on Tynwald Day 1998. Since then she had covered more than 875,000 miles and had an impressive reliability record of over 99 per cent. The vessel had carried more than 2.5 million passengers.