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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Coordinates: 54°03′50″N 2°52′43″W / 54.0640°N 2.8786°W / 54.0640; -2.8786

Morecambe Beach.jpg
Morecambe Bay
Morecambe is located in Lancashire

 Morecambe shown within Lancashire
Population 45,000 
OS grid reference SD4263
Parish Morecambe
District Lancaster
Shire county Lancashire
Region North West
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Postcode district LA3, LA4
Dialling code 01524
Police Lancashire
Fire Lancashire
Ambulance North West
EU Parliament North West England
UK Parliament Morecambe and Lunesdale
List of places: UK • England • Lancashire

Morecambe (pronounced /ˈmɔrkəm/) is a resort town and civil parish within the City of Lancaster in Lancashire, England. As of 2003 it has a resident population of about 45,000.[citation needed] It faces into Morecambe Bay. Morecambe and the nearby village of Heysham have a combined population of 51,400.[1]



In 1889 the villages of Bare, Poulton-le-Sands and Torrisholme collectively became known as Morecambe, though those areas of Morecambe are still known by their original names.

Morecambe was a thriving seaside resort in the mid-twentieth century. While the nearby resort of Blackpool attracted holiday-makers predominantly from the Lancashire mill towns, Morecambe had more visitors from Yorkshire and Scotland. Between 1956 and 1989 it was the home of the Miss Great Britain beauty contest.

Morecambe suffered from decline for a number of years following a series of incidents that affected its tourism and local economy.[2] Two piers were lost: West End Pier was washed away in a storm in 1978 while Central Pier, though struck by fire in 1933, survived until 1992. In 1994, The World of Crinkley Bottom attraction in Happy Mount Park closed only 13 weeks after opening and the ensuing 'Blobbygate' scandal led to a legal battle between Lancaster City Council and TV star Noel Edmonds. The closures of Bubbles, Morecambe's swimming pool, and Frontierland, a fairground, soon followed.

Morecambe Beach looking towards the West End

Concern over the decline of Morecambe's West End has led to some recent regeneration and investment in the area. The Times and the Daily Telegraph ran two-page features on Morecambe's revival around Easter 2006. After falling into abeyance in the mid-1980s, the Miss Morecambe beauty contest was revived in 2006 by Margee Ltd., a local fashion store, founded in 1933 - the same year that the Midland Hotel opened.

Morecambe was selected by the RNLI as the location for their first operational life-saving hovercraft, (Griffon 470SAR) H-002 "The Hurley Flyer", which was made operational on 23 December 2002. After immediate complaints from local residents the RNLI was obliged to remove the craft from the beach.

5 February 2004 saw a major loss of life in Morecambe Bay when Chinese immigrant shellfish harvesters were drowned.


The "Morecambe Budget"

Enoch Powell made a speech in Morecambe on 11 October 1968 on the economy, setting out alternative, radical free-market policies which would later be called the 'Morecambe Budget'.[citation needed] Powell used the financial year of 1968-9 to show how income tax could be halved from 8s 3d to 4s 3d in the pound (basic rate cut from 41% to 21%)[3][4] and how capital gains tax and selective employment tax could be abolished without reducing expenditure on defence or the social services. These tax cuts required a saving of £2,855 million, and this would be funded by eradicating losses in the nationalised industries and denationalising the profit-making state concerns; ending all housing subsidies except for those who could not afford their own housing; ending all foreign aid; ending all grants and subsidies in agriculture; ending all assistance to development areas; ending all investment grants;[5] abolishing the National Economic Development Council and abolishing the Prices and Incomes Board.[6] The cuts in taxation would also allow the state to borrow from the public to spend on capital projects such as hospitals and roads and on the firm and humane treatment of criminals.[7]


Morecambe is covered by three tiers of government - Morecambe Town Council, Lancaster City Council (District) and Lancashire County Council.

The town is in the Morecambe and Lunesdale parliamentary constituency. It is also represented in the European Parliament as part of the North West England constituency.


Frontierland - a theme park which closed in 2000

Morecambe's main central shopping area stretches from Central Drive Retail Park to the Arndale Shopping Centre. This area also incorporates two markets - The Festival Market and The Morecambe Sunday Market - and the Apollo Cinema complex.

Morecambe's manufacturing and industrial businesses are largely located in the White Lund Industrial Estate.

Morecambe is primarily a seaside resort with a large proportion of the local economy based on tourism, hospitality and catering located along the seafront. It is also situated at the foot of the Lake District National Park.

Legal and other professional services are concentrated on Northumberland Street and Victoria Street.


Morecambe is served by a number of primary, secondary and tertiary educational establishments. Morecambe High School is a specialist Mathematics and Computing College and Heysham High School is a specialist Sports college. Lancaster and Morecambe College is a further education college.


Performing Arts

The Platform and Dome are Morecambe's two largest live entertainment venues. The Platform is a converted Victorian-styled building which used to be the old railway station. It also houses the Morecambe Tourist Information Centre.


Morecambe hosts a number of large public festivals throughout the year including 'Catch The Wind' Kite Festival, West End Community Festival, Morecambe Jazz Festival and Tutti Frutti 1950's Festival.


Morecambe Bay potted shrimps are a famous local delicacy.


One of Morecambe's most famous landmarks is a statue commemorating one of its most famous sons, Eric Morecambe. It was created by sculptor Graham Ibbeson.

One of Morecambe's landmark buildings is the partially renovated Victoria Pavilion, also popularly known as Morecambe Winter Gardens. This was once a venue for swimming baths, grand theatre, restaurant and ballroom and even became a training camp at various times in its life.

Morecambe Library opened in 1967, and was designed by the office of the architect Roger Booth. It replaced the library on Victoria Street which opened in 1928. There had been earlier proposals to build a library in Morecambe with Carnegie funding, but arguments about the rates involved stalled the project; instead, one of the Aldermen spent his money on building the Clock Tower on the seafront. The library is mentioned by Pevsner, and is one of the few buildings not connected to the seaside trade to get a mention apart from churches. The building is formed by hexagons, with a hyperbolic parabolic roof, creating a distinctive skyline and *interior.

Morecambe once boasted two fairgrounds: a small one to the north of the railway station which closed down in the 80s, and a larger one to the south of the station, which finally became Frontierland and closed in 1999. The only remaining landmark left on the site is the Polo Tower, left standing only because of the contract for the phone mast on top.[8] The future of the remaining land remains uncertain.

In July 2008, the local council ordered a clean up of the Polo Tower and scaffolding was erected around the structure to carry out a survey.

Midland Hotel

Midland Hotel in 2008 after restoration

The Midland Hotel is an important art deco luxury hotel situated along the seafront. It still contains interior design and art pieces by artist Eric Gill. It has undergone a £7m restoration, headed by Manchester company Urban Splash.

The company has restored the hotel to its former glory and opened it for business in June 2008. New additions following the renovation include an outdoor swimming pool as shown in the building's new design.



Local newspapers include the Lancaster and Morecambe localised editions of The Guardian and the The Visitor.



Morecambe F.C. (the Shrimps) are the leading local football team and on 20 May 2007 won the Conference National playoffs to earn promotion to the Football League for the first time in their history. As of 2007-08, they are playing League Two. They had a successful first season in the Football League, surprising a few teams.


Morecambe Bay has some of the most varied fishing in all of Britain...and is perhaps most famous for Morecambe Bay Potted Shrimps which are 'By appointment to Her Majesty The Queen'.[citation needed]

Morecambe Dinghy Angling Club is at the forefront of providing exceptional launching facilities for small angling boats, and has arguably the best beach launching site in the North west.

Transport and infrastructure


Morecambe railway station has a regular rail service from Lancaster, with some trains running directly from Preston and Leeds. Trains also run to Heysham, where they connect with the ferry service to the Isle of Man. There is another railway station at Bare Lane, serving the suburb of Bare. Services are operated by Northern Rail.


Bus services in the area are operated mainly by Stagecoach Lancaster. Other local services are operated by Battersby's Coaches. Direct services link the town with Lancaster where connections to Keswick (555/556), Preston (40/41), Blackpool (42). Regular services up to every 15 minutes (numbers 3/3A/4) operate along the promenade to Heysham and to Lancaster University whilst services 2 and 2A operate up to every 10 minutes from Euston Road to both Heysham and Lancaster University. Services 6 and 6A operate via Westgate (where most caravan holiday parks are) to the ASDA supermarket and Salt Ayre Leisure Centre. Service 5 operates to Overton and Carnforth. Many services (2/2A/3/3A/4/6/6A) operate using Low Floor Easy Access Vehicles suitable for wheelchair users and prams/pushchairs, whilst other services use older buses.

Twin towns

Points of interest


  1. ^ Whittakers Almanac
  2. ^ Alan Cowell, Postcard From Ailing British Coasts: Wish You Were Here, The New York Times, April 12, 2007.
  3. ^ Roy Lewis, Enoch Powell: Principle in Politics (Cassell, 1979), p. 69.
  4. ^ Heffer, p. 484.
  5. ^ Robert Shepherd, Enoch Powell. A Biography (London: Pimlico, 1997), pp. 375-6.
  6. ^ Heffer, p. 485.
  7. ^ Heffer, pp. 485-6.
  8. ^ Cooper, Glen (2007-10-05). "Polo no-no". The Visitor. Johnston Press. Retrieved 2008-06-17. 

External links

Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

Morecambe is a seaside town in Lancashire.

Get in

Morecambe is approximately five miles from the county town of Lancaster (and indeed forms a small conurbation). It is well placed for explorations of Lakeland, Bowland, and the western side of the Yorkshire Dales.

It is located close to the M6 motorway, the main west-coast arterial road in Britain.

Rail services from Lancaster are frequent, Lancaster itself is served by the West Coast Main Line. Services also run to Manchester Airport and Leeds.

Get around

Although access is beset with difficulties from Lancaster, due to an excess of traffic, Morecambe itself is relatively easy to get around. Try parking on the front, and then simply walking along the Prom.


Morecambe gives its name to Morecambe Bay, one of Britain's largest tidal areas. This makes for an excellent haven for wildlife, particularly birds. The view of the Lake District is particularly picturesque (some say this is simply because you are facing away from Morecambe), and the sunsets are often impressive.


Morecambe has a long promenade, which extends from the ancient fishing village of Heysham in the southwest, along Sandylands to the Battery in Morecambe's West End. It continues from there along the entire length of the seafront in Morecambe, passing the newly renovated Midland Grand Hotel, the Stone Jetty, Eric Morecambe Statue, Clock Tower, and Lifeboat Station before reaching Happy Mount Park in the northeast. In all the length of the promenade is around five miles, and it is completely flat, making it popular for those on bicycles, wheelchairs, or with prams. Most of the Promenade has been regenerated in the past fifteen years, initially through the 'Tern Project' which reflects the biological diversity of the area through a number of states and sculptures of bird life. Many of these are along the Stone Jetty, a former ship breaking point which extends out into the bay.

The Eric Morecambe Statue, in roughly the centre of the promenade, celebrates the life and interests of Morecambe's most famous son John Eric Morecambe, one half of Morecambe and Wise. Unveiled by the Queen in 1999, the statue is depicts Eric in a characteristic pose, surrounded by inscriptions of some of his most famous catchphrases.

More recently, emphasis has moved towards providing high quality childrens play areas along the Front and other public art works. Many of these are in Morecambe's West End and the area known as Sandylands, which extends towards Heysham, and also in Happy Mount Park, a large public park at the end of the Prom.

Morecambe is home to the Platform, a theatre in a converted station which hosts live music and comedy; the Dome, a similar public arts venue; a four screen cinema, twenty lane bowling alley, and Megazone, a laser tag centre in a converted Music Hall.


In between many of the cheap and cheerful shops on the Front are some extremely high quality gift shops offering art, jewellery and crafts at very reasonable prices. Icecream is something of a local speciality, with Brucianni's and Lewis's offering their own makes, and English Lakes available in many restaurants.

There are still many arcades on the Promenade, offering a range of traditional seaside games such as tuppeny pushers and bingo (the term itself originating in Morecambe, along with helter skelter), one armed bandits, and videogames.


Morecambe has a wide variety of cafes and restaurants, plus some good pubs in the locale.

Among the best:

Cafes: Lubins - tea, coffee, milkshakes, wide selection of cakes, some savoury dishes Chill - smoothies and such like. Artisan - more bohemian affair, offering excellent coffee and homemade cakes.

Restaurants: The Bow Window - Under new management October 2008 from previous couple who ran the Waterslack garden centre Cafe, excellent foods at great value prices with a selection of hand crafted cakes and delights. mmmmm delights :)

  • Midland Grand Hotel, symbolic of the resort's decline, has been the focus of much of Morecambe's attempts to revitalise itself in recent years. It has recently reopened as a forty-eight bedroom luxury hotel with spa and restaurant. Midland Hotel, Morecambe [1]
  • Crown Hotel and Pebbles restaurant offers boutique accommodation with views over the Bay to the Lakes, with food by an award winning chef.

There are many other hotels and guest houses throughout the town and in the surrounding villages which provide an excellent base for exploring the Lakes, Dales and northern Lancashire.

Get out

As soon as you can. Heysham, a fishing village with medieaval origins is accessible on foot. The Lakes are around half an hour's drive. The film Brief Encounter was shot at Carnforth, which has a visitor centre at its station. Lancaster is an attractive small city, as are both Kirkby Lonsdale, and Kendal.

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Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary


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Proper noun


  1. A resort town in Lancashire, England

Simple English

Morecambe is a town in the county Lancashire. It is in the North of England. It has a football team in league 2 of the football league. It is a seaside holiday area. It is famous for its food from the sea and Mr Blobby. It is in the City of Lancaster district.


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