A LIST of 24 “historic and interesting” buildings in Blackburn and Darwen has been drawn up for special protection by the borough council.

They include the Wesleyan Methodist Church in Clayton Street, Blackburn, the town’s Soho Foundry in Cicely Lane, Little Harwood War Memorial, Darwen Vale Schools and Astley Bank in Darwen.


Other buildings classed as local list heritage assets include Blackburn Fire Station in Byrom Street, Woodfield Mill in Darwen, Feniscowles Old Hall in Pleasington, and The Barlow Institute and bowling green in Edgworth.

Although not legally protected from demolition or development without specific permission like fully nationally listed buildings such as King George’s Hall and Blackburn Cathedral, any changes will be given special consideration in the planning process.

The draft list will be approved at the next meeting of Blackburn with Darwen Council’s executive board on Thursday. The owners of two of them, Woodfold Mill and Waterfall Mills in Mill Hill, formally objected to their inclusion.

Borough regeneration boss Phil Riley said: “These are historic and interesting buildings which are an important part of Blackburn and Darwen’s industrial heritage.

“Some of them may surprise people but we believe they are worth preserving if possible.

“We are not talking about a formal listing which prevents any change without specific authorisation but making sure their importance to the borough is respected in dealing with any planning applications for them. This demonstrates that our redevelopment of the borough for the 21st century goes hand in hand with preserving its historic and architectural heritage.

“We spoke to the owners of Woodfold Mill and Waterfall Mills to reassure them about what we we were doing and why we were doing it.”

The 24 were specially selected, by a panel, from a huge list of nominations from the public. The initial list of 24 up for approval on Thursday will be added to in future years.

The document detailing the new local heritage assets said: “The purpose of the list is to enable better protection of those parts of the historic environment that the community genuinely values, and provides clarity for developers.

“Blackburn’s historic environment can make an important contribution to successful place making and increases a community’s sense of place. It has also been proven to have a positive impact on economic activity.”