Blackpool Tower Ballroom prepares for its big spring clean

Aaron Edgar, Head of Operations at Blackpool Tower spoke to Granada Reports about the annual spring clean

The grand Blackpool Tower Ballroom is preparing for a 'nerve racking' swap of sequins for feather dusters as staff get ready to carry out the annual spring clean.

Fourteen giant chandeliers will be carefully lowered for the clean, which has taken place every year in the Ballroom's 124 year history and takes two weeks.

The chandeliers will be lowered by hand and then individually cleaned, polished and dusted.

Each chandelier is carefully lowered by hand to be expertly cleaned. Credit: PA

Each chandelier has more than eighty lightbulbs, meaning 1,120 lights have to be individually cleaned and inspected by hand to ensure they are in full working order.

The lights are then returned to their positions so they can continue to sparkle over the ballroom for another 12 months.

Archive image of the chandeliers being cleaned in 2019, ahead of the Tower's 125th anniversary. Credit: PA

The Ballroom's iconic wooden floors, which have been quick stepped upon by some of the most famous names in the dance world, will also be stripped back, sanded down, varnished and then polished to perfection.

Aaron Edgar, Head of Operations at Blackpool Tower said: "The crystal on the chandeliers is hand cut from Italy.

"So there's a huge amount of pressure on the people in there. There's four people hand winching these down.

"It's very nerve racking but the people up here have done it many many times."

Staff cleaning the chandeliers at Blackpool Tower ballroom Credit: ITV Granada

Made from 30,602 blocks of mahogany, oak and walnut, the specialist cleaning work is vital to ensure any dance can be performed in style.

The spring clean aims to maintain the condition the Ballroom was in when it opened in 1899, and it continues to sparkle because of the painstakingly strict cleaning and maintenance programme carried out by staff each year.

The ballroom has played host to some of the world's most famous dancers. Credit: PA

The venue is still regarded as one of the country's premier ballroom dancing venues.

Facts about the Ballroom:

  • The original Blackpool Tower Ballroom was a smaller pavilion which opened in August 1894.

  • The inscription above the Ballroom stage,“Bid me discourse, I will enchant thine ear” is from a sonnet by Shakespeare – Venus and Adonis.

  • The first Wurlitzer organ was installed in the Ballroom in 1929. It was replaced in 1935.

  • In December 1956, the Ballroom was badly damaged by fire, during which the dance floor was destroyed, along with the restaurant below. It took two years and £500,000 to restore the Ballroom to its former splendour. The restaurant became the Tower Lounge.

  • The ballroom has hosted BBC series Strictly Come Dancing on numerous occasions.

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