Vulnerable pregnant teenagers and young mums are being targeted with a new mobile phone app called Baby Buddy - an initiative backed by Blackpool Council, the Department of Health, Royal College of Midwives and other professional health bodies.
Young mums are more likely to have premature babies, suffer from mental health problems and their babies are more likely to have learning difficulties. They are less likely to get reliable information about their pregnancy (eg the effect of alcohol on the foetus). The new Baby Buddy) ap is free and can be customised to suit the user.
It gives mums-to-be all the information they need to get them through a healthy pregnancy, birth, breastfeeding etc. It also addresses mental health - eg the signs to look out for which could mean post-natal depression.
It's being piloted in Blackpool and has been trialled by hundreds of pregnant women and health professionals. TV doctor, Dr Ranj Singh, says "this is the future of healthcare".
Blackpool Airport will reopen for small aircraft and helicopters, but will not serve commercial passengers.
Squires Gate Airport Operations Limited is advertising for air traffic controllers and other staff to work at the airport from December 1.
Balfour Beatty closed the airport last month after failing to secure a buyer, with the loss of about 100 jobs.
A man in Blackpool can expect to live five years less than the national average, figures from the Office for National Statistics show.Read the full story ›
Blackpool Council say a couple fined £100 for leaving a bad review of a hotel in the town will be refunded, and hotel's policy of fining those who leave bad reviews has been cancelled.
Tim Coglan, Head of Public Protection at Blackpool Council spoke to Granada Reports.
A couple "fined" by a hotel in Blackpool after they wrote a damning review about it are to be given a refund.
Tony and Jan Jenkinson said they were charged an extra £100 after describing the Broadway Hotel as a "filthy, stinking hovel" on TripAdvisor.
When they queried the charge, they were said to have been told it was incurred under a "no bad review policy" included in the terms and conditions.
Blackpool Council said they understood that the hotel will reimburse them, as well as scrapping the policy.
Gillian Campbell, cabinet member responsible for public protection at the local authority, said:
"Our trading standards team became aware of this issue last week.
"As a result, we have spoken to the hotel owner and asked for the policy to be removed, which has now happened.
"This is a unique case and not one that we have come across before."
Tony and Jan Jenkinson had a £100 extra charged to their credit card after they called the Broadway Hotel a 'filthy, stinking hovel" after staying there.
When they queried it they were told there was a 'no bad review' policy in the terms and conditons.
Jan told Granada Reports she was "furious" at the charge.
A spokesperson for the travel reviews site TripAdvisor says it is against the "spirit" of online reviews for a hotel owner to attempt to bully any online reviewers.
TripAdvisor spokesman James Kay said:
"While, thankfully, such instances are very rare, it is completely against the spirit and policies of our site for any business owner to attempt to bully or intimidate reviewers who have had a negative experience.
"Where we find evidence of a business doing so, we will take action to protect the integrity of our site."
A couple claim they've been 'fined' £100 by a Blackpool hotel after giving them a bad review online. Tony and Jan Jenkinson from Whitehaven posted negative comments on Tripadvisor after a night at the Broadway Hotel. They later found the money had bee charged to their credit card. The hotel said its policy was to charge for "bad" reviews.
The policy, contained in a booking document, reads: "Despite the fact that repeat customers and couples love our hotel, your friends and family may not. For every bad review left on any website, the group organiser will be charged a maximum £100 per review." Trading Standards are investigating.
Following the airport closure, we announced our commitment to develop a sustainable future for aviation services at Blackpool Airport, today is the first step in that process. Squires Gate Airport Operations Ltd will support the return of independent aviation businesses to Blackpool, including Bond Offshore Helicopters. We look forward to working with the local councils and other stakeholders as we seek to ensure a long term future for flying in Blackpool
Blackpool and Fylde College will be a new centre of excellence for fracking.
It'll offer advanced engineering courses for use in the onshore oil and gas industries.
Test drilling in the region has proved controversial with claims it caused earth tremors.
But supporters say it will help meet growing energy needs.
It's being set up by representative body UKOOG to meet the industry’s future skills needs and help the UK to become an international centre of excellence for onshore operations.
The news is being announced by the Business and Enterprise Minister Matthew Hancock on a visit to the college.
“Crucially, this will drive long term investment in the region, meet the demand for highly skilled labour and secure local jobs. To be named as the hub for one of the National Colleges is a privilege. It is testament to the College’s well established relationships with industry partners and high quality skills training up to and including honours degree programmes.”
The College has been supported in its bid by a number of industry-leading organisations including Centrica Energy and Cuadrilla Resources.
"Several independent studies have shown that the development of a shale gas industry in the region will generate tens of thousands of jobs and this new National College will give the North West region a head start in developing the skills that are needed for a productive shale gas industry.”