Blackpool Council cuts puts 300 jobs at risk

Three hundred jobs could go at Blackpool Council and services could be cut as it tries to save £13.5m in its budget next year, it has revealed.

Council leader Simon Blackburn described government funding cuts as "insane" as he unveiled the plans.

Workers will again be asked to take four days of unpaid leave. Talks with the unions are under way.

The council said some services would be protected, such as the illuminations and having social workers for children.

Library services will also be protected.

'Not the end'

There are also plans for new shows along the length of the Blackpool lights, to entice visitors to spend more money.

However, the Labour-run council said 200 jobs and 100 contract posts could be lost as a result of the budget cuts.

The council's Customer First centre and community youth services - known as Universal - will also be axed to make savings.

Mr Blackburn said it would be a difficult few years.

"This is not the end of the process, it is not even the beginning of the end of the process," he said.

"This will keep happening until the government wakes up and realises its economic policies, particularly in relation to local economies and particularly in relation to the north and deprived communities, are absolutely insane and need to stop."

He said people had volunteered to take unpaid leave in order to save their colleagues' jobs.

Dion Baugh, regional organiser for Unison, said: "We accept there may be some jobs and services that do need to go.

"But the impact is going to be devastating across the board - youth services, adult services withdrawn, these are services which are desperately needed in Blackpool."

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