In praise of the Blackpool Landlady

Published: 03rd November 2009
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She is prim and proper, and she makes a business of letting rooms to visitors as a landlady at the seaside resort of Blackpool. It does not matter that the paying guests make demands - some more meekly than others -- or insist on receiving extra services; the stereotypical Blackpool landlady pays little attention as she rules her guests with an iron rod.

Print publications picked up on this stereotype, and soon there were less than flattering depictions of the quintessential Blackpool landlady, who will offer a made bed, an early breakfast and a meal during the evening hours, but refuses to cede to any guest requests. She is shown as the merciless matron, who sternly bids her huddling guests farewell in the morning, even if there is a downpour and they beg for an extension of the stay.

Of course, what all these caricatures failed to portray or even allude to is the backbreaking labor that goes into running a bed and breakfast or hotels in Blackpool. Due to its reputation of being a desirable Lancashire seaside destination for the well heeled tourist in search of combining a holiday with the supposed cure of bathing in the salty sea, Blackpool saw its fair share of sickly and demanding tourists, who would more often than not become the scourge of Blackpool hotels.

Running the landlady ragged with demands, never satisfied with what was offered but frequently complaining and arguing about the settlement of accounts, the Blackpool landlady had no choice but to confront these troublesome guests by sternly enforcing house rules to which guests had previously agreed.

Of course, when you visit hotels in Blackpool today, you will find that this stereotype of the landlady is no longer true. Modern day Blackpool landladies govern a staff in keeping with the size of the venue, and the customer is always right. Sure, Blackpool hotels still have some time honored traditions, but your average landlady is more concerned about making you comfortable than insisting on keeping with tradition.

In part, this shift is due to the change of Blackpool's tourist makeup. While in the past guests would stay for one or two weeks during their holidays, today the majority of travelers are made up of those in search for a weekend break to take a respite from the hustle and bustle of the bigger cities.

Why not book your very own Blackpool hotel stay and see if you do not notice a difference!

Roo Sadegi is a travel writer based in London's East End, although he spends much of his time traveling around Europe's travel hotspots

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