Located in the English county of Lancashire, on the Irish Sea coast, Blackpool is one of the largest and most popular resorts in the country. Its growth has been quite rapid since the late 18th century, when it was transformed from a small hamlet clustered around a “black pool” into a fashionable sea-bathing center. Its early popularity is ascribed to the British scientific writer William Hutton, who popularized the health-giving properties of seawater. Further attractions included the building (520 feet) of the Blackpool Tower, a regional landmark modeled on the Eiffel Tower in Paris, and the introduction of illuminations, a complex decoration of seafront buildings by colored lights and tableaux. Piers, golf courses, swimming pools, an ice rink, a zoological park, and extensive amusement parks help attract millions of visitors annually. Blackpool also has developed as a major British conference and convention center.
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