CharabancTom Grieve, Cinema Editor
One of the must stop shops in Blackpool, Charabanc is your go-to for vintage and handcrafted items including fashion, gifts and homewares. Set into the side of the world famous Winter Gardens — a 140 year old entertainment complex comprising theatre, ballroom and much more — this community focused endeavour offers local designers and makers the priceless opportunity to sell their wares on the high street.
This community focused endeavour offers local designers and makers the priceless opportunity to sell their wares on the high street.
Charabanc opened in 2012 as a project devised and delivered by Aunty Social — a volunteer-run organisation who specialise in founding self-sustaining arts and cultural initiatives along the Fylde Coast. Since then shoppers have been picking up everything from retro vintage dresses, to prints and jewelry from Blackpool based artists, to locally blended teas.
As with any good homewares and gifts shop, product ranges vary seasonally and according to the output of local makers and producers. Visit at Christmastime and Charabanc might be filled with handcrafted decorations, with other occasions such as Easter or Valentine’s Day marked with appropriately themed cards and special gift ideas.
Product ranges vary seasonally and according to the output of local makers and producers
The shop is volunteer run and it is not unheard of for opening times to vary according to the time of year, so it is worth checking before you make a special trip. Charabanc is also known to have hosted crafty workshops and special shopping events in the past — again, it’s worth checking the shop’s social channels for these.
As with other Aunty Social projects such as arts and culture magazine Blackpool Social Club, the Winter Gardens Film Festival or the Pop-Up Picturehouse, the team at Charabanc is entirely focused on helping to create a vibrant, active and diverse community — meaning you can shop in good conscience.