Hello everybody, it’s impossible not to see changes that have taken place all around the Barlow estate in recent years, from the new roof, the playground, the MUGA, the Woodlands etc…. and after many years of decline the whole area is now in great shape for the future.

However, we have a constant need to replenish our volunteers teams in all areas of running the estate and we are organising an open morning to coincide with the Edgworth Fun Day where anybody can come and talk with existing volunteers and Trustees about how they may be able to get involved. As well as general areas of volunteering we also have specific projects that people may want to get involved with, commitments are entire flexible…

So the building itself is now safe, it is secure, and it is dry. But the damage done by water leaks through the roof over the years has been extensive and we now need to start the huge job of refurbishing the inside of the building so as to match the quality of the outside.

The first project will be the Main Hall redecoration, replacement of the ageing sound system, and an upgrade of the stage lighting to make our Main Hall the best version of itself that it can be. We had expected to have to go out to our community to ask for funding for this project but as usual we have found some wonderful individual benefactors and the team have been working hard to find funding for the project to the extent that we now have a fully funded project ready to go. However, part of the project relies on getting a team of volunteers together to help with decoration prep work, taking off old wall coverings, sanding down surfaces, painting etc.

So if you have a little spare time and would like to help we are having an open morning on Sunday 11th June at 11.30am where you can come to meet the team and work out how you can help. 


Blackburn with Darwen Council handed over the running and upkeep of The Barlow to the community in 2013. Since then The Barlow Charity has relied upon the generosity of benefactors and income from users of the facilities, plus the efforts of volunteers to sustain this much valued community facility. Significant improvements have been carried out to help ensure a long-term future, including a new roof, replacement windows, new hygienic worktops in the coffee shop kitchen and a new hot water & heating system. Most recently (summer 2022) the renovation of the outdoor veranda has been completed and a new adjacent decking area has been installed. In addition the snooker room has been restored to its former splendour by a small group of volunteers.

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An important source of funding that has contributed to the above mentioned improvements is The Friends of the Barlow scheme.  By becoming a Friend you can contribute to a fund that is used for repairs and renovations to the structural fabric of the building and pathways etc, and to upgrade, refresh and improve facilities e.g. now that the building is once again weathertight there are plans being drawn up for the main hall can be deep-cleaned, re-decorated and refurbished and other water-damaged areas such as the main stairway & its beautiful large, stained glass window to also be restored to their former glory.

As a Friend of The Barlow, your regular donations provide a much appreciated, steady income stream that to date (summer 2022) has raised in the region of over £40,000, which has been mostly used contributing towards paying for the roof, windows and heating system.
We intend to soon publish the overall list of improvements/tasks and from that you will see that there is a significant amount of expenditure still needed to achieve all of the identified tasks and improvements. We would welcome donations/sponsorship for specific items that may be of particular interest to individuals or families or groups, but the regular donations by Friends of The Barlow are also crucial. Therefore, we welcome any and all new donors and are grateful for whatever amount you choose to donate.

We are of course also very grateful to all of our existing Friends of The Barlow and if you are able to increase your monthly donation by any amount, that would be hugely appreciated – you can either make the increase to your standing order directly with your bank or you can complete a new form and send it to your bank or give it to us to process.

Please also consider increasing the value of your donation at no extra cost to you by using Gift Aid – as an example, an £8 donation from you becomes £10 with the Gift Aid add-on!

If you wish to donate please click on the link below, complete the form and either send it to your bank with an email copy to our email address fotb@thebarlow.co.uk  or return the completed form to the Barlow’s office in a sealed envelope addressed to Friends of The Barlow.  Paper copies of the form are available from The Barlow.

For any further information please email fotb@thebarlow.co.uk or contact the office via info@thebarlow.co.uk or 01204 852216.

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