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Blackpool: The Imagined

Part 1 Project 2014
Christopher Delahunt
Leeds Beckett University, UK
Blackpool was Britain’s first choice tourist resort, until the rise of cheap package holidays; it flourished as a holiday destination during the 1960’s. Now, with holidaymakers heading overseas, Blackpool’s economy has suffered, it is no longer successful. The Blackpool Promenade, ‘The Golden Mile’, encompasses most of Blackpool’s pieces of iconography and monuments. It forms a threshold between the transient and permanent populations giving the town a ‘dual identity’. Analyses of the town concluded that it has 2 distinct sides fighting against 4 static seasons. To make Blackpool successful once again, it required multiple sides existing within multiple inconstant seasons. Machines of change where sought within the casino’s along the promenade to locate a unit for reinvention. The Dice was chosen as a reinvention machine. When rolled, it remains the same object but provides a different outcome. Using the dice as a unit for obsession, two rules of ‘dice pixelation’ and ‘dice algorithm’ were extracted from the object’s characteristics, rituals and choreographies which were applied as a filter over what remained of the town. Combined with a new set of seasons, these rules for reinvention created a machine to produce constantly unique configurations of Blackpool. By ‘supposing’ to both ‘do nothing’ and ‘do something’, a machine known as ‘The Realm of Blackpool’ was formed. Blackpool exists virtually within this machine. The project concludes showcasing the first trip to ‘The Realm of Blackpool’. The ‘User’, as they are known, creates the opening configuration of the city famously named ‘The Inaugural Configuration of Blackpool’. Anyone can visit Blackpool now via the machine, and each version of Blackpool explored is bespoke to whoever rolled the machine. The dice probability and pixelation provides infinite unique configurations: not one permutation is ever the same. People will keep visiting indefinitely.
Blackpool is a success once again.

Christopher Delahunt


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