News

More than 30 years on Darwen Market & Shirley is not up for retiring

Traders on Darwen’s three day market staged a surprise birthday party for one of the longest serving traders. Karen Hawthornthwaite on the Candy Rush stall organised the celebration for her mother, card stall holder, Shirley Pilling who has been a market trader in Darwen for over 30 years. Shirley who reached the age of 65, says she has no intention of …

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Mum’s the Word come to Darwen

Mum’s the Word, the successful social enterprise company which recycles textiles and provides affordable uniform solutions has come to Darwen’s three day market. Families in the area can now find affordable second-hand and new recycled branded and non-branded school clothing, shoes and school coats. Joint founder and mum, Caroline Fotios explains, ‘We were keen to come to Darwen because we …

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Consultation Launched on Discount Rates Scheme for New & Expanding businesses in the area around Blackburn Town Hall

Consultations on a possible new business rate scheme offering up to 100 per cent discount to eligible businesses taking an empty shop unit in Blackburn town centre has been announced. The Business Rates Incentive could see new or expanding businesses within a designated area in the town centre benefitting from the discount on their business rates for 12 months. This …

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Grants available to community groups to commemorate WWI centenary

2014 marks the centenary of the outbreak of the Great War. To commemorate this, the leader of the Council has announced a small grants fund for Your Call groups wishing to remember some of the darkest days of our History. Community groups that have taken part in Your Call events can apply to the fund. For example they may have …

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The Queen to visit Blackburn for historic Maundy Ceremony

Her Majesty the Queen will be coming to Blackburn in April to hand out Maundy Money at the town’s Cathedral to men and women from across the County. The Maundy Money Ceremony 2014 Every year the Monarch visits a UK cathedral or abbey to give out Maundy coins to people aged 70 and over in recognition of their service to their …

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Council Launch Let’s Adopt Campaign

Blackburn with Darwen Council’s children’s services has launched Let’s Adopt — a campaign to encourage more potential parents in the borough and surrounding areas to consider adoption. The scheme follows a recent change in Government legislation, which broadened the scope of people who can legally adopt a child. Single people, non-homeowners, those who are in fulltime employment, same-sex couples and …

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Darwen Markets get musical!

Gwen Sangster, manager of Darwen Market has revealed she’s also a songster as she launches a monthly programme of performances by local buskers in the three day hall. Gwen, who now sings with Blackburn People’s Choir, was once one half of a professional folk duo.  She recently had the opportunity to record a CD in a professional recording studio and …

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Blackburn with Darwen come together for Holocaust Memorial Day

Blackburn with Darwen will once again come together for Holocaust Memorial Day on Sunday, January 26, to remember the victims of genocide. Supported by Blackburn with Darwen Council, alongside the Interfaith Forum, the event will take place on the steps of Blackburn Town Hall on King William Street at 2pm. Including speeches from the Mayor of Blackburn with Darwen, Cllr …

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Josephine Cox returns to Blackburn to celebrate her 50th novel

Blackburn author Josephine Cox is hosting a drop-in session at the town’s central library on Thursday, February 13. Her visit to her home town coincides with the publication of her 50th book, The Runaway Woman. The award-winning author is meeting a group of school children from 10.30am until 12pm, then hosting an informal drop-in session meeting her fans from 12.00 until …

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Blackburn is Open Launch

Blackburn is Open is holding an official opening of Blackburn’s first ever pop up art centre tomorrow, another step for the scheme in creating a more vibrant town centre. Formerly known as the ‘T-shop’, the centre on King William Street has already been home to Blackburn is Open’s popular art market and activities like lantern making workshops. It has undergone …

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Darwen Market to raffle India Mill cake for Charity

Darwen 3 Day Market is offering people the chance to win an amazing cake that is a representation of the town’s famous India Mill. The cake, which was donated to the market, is on display near the cafe and raffle tickets are being offered at just £1 per ticket with all proceeds going to East Lancashire Hospice. The cake, which …

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Look after the elderly and vulnerable in the cold weather

Blackburn Weather

Make sure you keep warm this winter and keep an eye out for elderly or vulnerable neighbours. If you are worried about people in your community, there are Council and NHS services that can help. A key service is the Guidance for Living Over Winter (GLOW) scheme. Backed by Blackburn with Darwen Council, NHS and voluntary organisations, it offers winter housing and related  advice …

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Stabbing at Darwen house – Appeal for information

Police are asking for information after a 30 year old man suffered serious injuries after being stabbed at a house in Darwen. Around 3.20am on New Year’s Day (Wednesday 1 January 2014), police were called to the house on Park Road where a man had been stabbed in the chest. The 30 year old was taken to Royal Preston hospital where he …

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Blackburn cannabis factory shut down by police

Blackburn Police had shut down a large-scale cannabis factory in the town. Information from locals alerted the police to a potential cannabis set-up at an address on Shear Brow. When police executed a warrant at the address on Sunday 29 December, they discovered and seized around five hundred mature cannabis plants. Forensic tests are still to be done on the …

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New public artwork unveiled at gateway to the town

A new piece of public artwork, called ‘Natural Forces in Challenging Times’, has been unveiled at a key junction in Blackburn. The sculpture depicts a pair of rutting stags and is located on the roundabout on Haslingden Road at the entrance to the Royal Blackburn Hospital. It was the result of a six month project between landscape designer John Everiss, …

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Local Hotel scoops Spa award

The Spa at Stanley House, Mellor, has won ‘Best New Spa in the UK’ in this year’s SPA Traveller Awards. This SPA Traveller Awards recognise the top spa destinations around the world and the winners are chosen by the readers of its website. The SPA Traveller is a luxury, lifestyle, digital magazine which provides an objective guide to the world’s finest …

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Blackburn School celebrates as doors open on £10m project

A Blackburn school is celebrating as it opens the door on its brand new £10m school in time for Christmas. Our Lady and St John Catholic College on North Road, Blackburn, is part of the multi-million pound Building Schools for the Future (BSF) programme renewing and rebuilding local schools and providing students with 21st century learning environments and to make Blackburn …

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Train disruption into Manchester Victoria over Christmas period

Northern Rail are warning passengers that services into Manchester Victoria will be disrupted in the over the Christmas period due to the ongoing work to upgrade the station and introduce electrification on some lines. To allow the project to be completed safely, there will be no Northern Rail trains serving Manchester Victoria after the last service on Christmas Eve until …

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Boxing Day Bus Services in Blackburn and Darwen

Blackburn with Darwen Council has decided to bring some festive cheer to bus passengers by subsidising a limited public transport service on Boxing Day across the borough. The extra bus services will help residents and visitors get to our town centres for work or shopping, visiting the hospital and also the Blackburn Rovers match. There will be revisions to some …

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Extended Opening Hours for Blackburn Library

Blackburn Library

Blackburn Central Library has new weekend opening hours. It is now open on both Saturdays and Sundays from 10am until 4pm. This initiative is part of Blackburn with Darwen Council’s plans to breathe new life into the town centre. The Central library remains one of the Borough’s busiest civic buildings, offering a range of services which includes provision of public ICT access in addition to traditional book loans …

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Darwen man jailed for 4 years for Preston burglary

A Darwen man has been jailed for four years at Preston Crown Court for committing a burglary in Preston. After a three day trial, a jury found Lee Heath Jones, 47, of Hazel Avenue, Darwen, guilty of a burglary on Blackpool Road, Preston in August 2013, where a number of electrical items and cash were stolen. Whilst in the property …

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CCTV images of man wanted after girl was grabbed

Police are appealing for witnesses to come forward after a 16 year old girl was allegedly grabbed by a man as she walked along Amberley Street in Blackburn earlier this week. The incident is believed to have happened around 5.30pm on Wednesday afternoon (4th December) when the girl was walking alone. A man jogged past her, reached out and touched her inappropriately before …

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Small Business Saturday – Blackburn and Darwen – Make the change!

The national campaign to get people shopping locally with small independent retailers is scheduled for tomorrow, Saturday 7th December. People are being encouraged to make the change from large national chains and discover the gems on their own streets with Small Business Saturday. Blackburn and Darwen both have fantastic markets steeped in hundreds of years of tradition and boast a …

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Santa Claus is coming to town!

Santa Claus is coming back to Blackburn courtesy of Blackburn Round Table. The ever popular tour of the town with Santa on his sleigh has helped raise funds for local charities and individuals over many years and they are aiming to make the difference again. Here is the full programme of Santa visits and when he will be bringing festive …

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Lancashire Day in Blackburn

Special events were in full swing today to celebrate Lancashire Day in Blackburn. Guest town crier, Roland Hailwood, visited the Town Hall and Blackburn Market to make the Lancashire Day proclamation. His booming voice brought many people to a standstill. The market was also bedecked in Lancashire flags and were entertained by the Phil Knight Experience with traditional Lancashire music. …

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Hundreds enjoy the Christmas Lights Switch On in Blackburn

Hundreds of people packed into King William Street in Blackburn to see the Christmas Lights’ Switch on and be entertained by X-Factor stars including Matt Cardle this evening. The event, which was also accompanied by a range of street food traders took place over two hours this evening, with the climax of the event being the switch on of the …

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Free parking initiative is not just for Christmas

Blackburn shoppers are about to get free parking everyday from 3pm on all council owned car parks in the town. This is in addition to the free parking already on offer on Saturdays. The free parking comes into force from the town’s light switch on this week. It is aimed at giving shoppers and traders a Christmas boost but will continue …

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Shop Local in Blackburn and Darwen

Shoppers are being urged to shop local and support our market traders and independent retailers on Saturday, December 7th. Lots of events and special offers are available in Blackburn and Darwen town centre on the day as part of the global event. Traders have come together to organise the events themselves to attract visitors into the town centre and show off …

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Christmas all wrapped in the Mall with Polar Bear’s Picnic

The Mall Blackburn has Christmas 2013 all wrapped up with late night openings and a very special guest appearance from Bjorn the globe trotting famous Polar Bear amongst the many exciting plans! Late night shopping will start in style on the evening that X-Factor winner Matt Cardle flicks the switch on Blackburn’s Christmas lights on Thursday 21st November. The Mall …

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