Some of East Lancashire’s landmarks have disappeared over the years, including Camelot theme park near Chorley and the iconic Thwaites tower in Blackburn.

Here are eight of the most memorable buildings that have been demolished.

1. Thwaites Brewery in Blackburn

Lancashire Telegraph:

One of most significant demolitions for East Lancashire was the ripping down of the Thwaites Brewery and tower in Blackburn.

The tower was pulled down in October of 2019 in a controlled manner with cranes bringing down the nine-storey aluminium-clad structure which dominated the town’s skyline since the 1960s.

The decision to end brewing at the Penny Street site was brought forward after travellers took over the site on the May Bank Holiday in 2018, causing more than £300,000 worth of damage.

Work on the demolition was supposed to start in 2018 but was delayed after a pair of peregrine falcons – which have full legal protection in the UK - nested and hatched two chicks close to the tower.

Once the birds had vacated work was able to begin on the demolition.

2. Camelot Theme Park, Charnock Richard

Lancashire Telegraph:

Camelot Theme Park, in Charnock Richard near Chorley, closed to customers on September 2, 2012 after 29 years.

Based on the story of Camelot, King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table, the managing director blamed poor summer weather and events such as London 2012 and the Diamond Jubilee for declining visitor numbers.

Some of the rollercoasters were sold while others remained in the abandoned park, where demolition began in December 2020.

3. Blackburn Royal Infirmary

Lancashire Telegraph:

Blackburn Royal Infirmary closed to patients in July 2006 as part of a merger with Queen's Park Hospital, which is now Blackburn Royal Hospital.

The infirmary opened in 1864 and was extended on several occasions, including the Victoria Wing being built in 1897 to commemorate the diamond Jubilee of the Queen.

In 1914, King George V added the word “royal” to the title, with it then being known as “The Blackburn and East Lancashire Royal Infirmary.”

By 2006, most of the services had moved to Queen's Park Hospital and the site was sold to Barratt Homes.

4. Thompson Centre

Lancashire Telegraph:


The Thompson Centre, which was on Red Lion Street, was bulldozed in 2006 after being open to the public for 32 years.

The leisure centre, which was used by thousands of people over the years, was opened in 1974, at a cost of £1.25m, thanks to the generosity of millionaire William Thompson, who died just days before the opening.

The Thompson Centre boasted a 50-metre pool, two sports halls, squash courts and it was one of the first in the country to offer a creche. A separate diving pool was added later.

5. Grand Theatre

Lancashire Telegraph: The Work starts on demolishing the Grand Theatre in Blackburn, to make way for the tonwn's new telephone exchange.

The Grand Theatre was closed to audiences in 1956 and was demolished two years later.

Based on Jubilee Street, the theatre had a history spanning around eight decades, starting as a simple wooden building in the 1870s, which burned down one night following a Salvation Army meeting.

In 1880 it was replaced by the Amphitheatre, before becoming the Princes Theatre and in 1928, it became the Grand Theatre.

In the early 1930s, the theatre became a full-time cinema however this was short lived and within three years it had become a live theatre once again.

6. Odeon Cinema

Lancashire Telegraph: Odeon Cinema closed down and it was demolished 1974

Beginning its life in 1931 as the Rialto, the Odeon cinema in Blackburn boasted a stunning art deco style with some arguing it was one of Blackburn’s most luxurious cinemas.

Based on Penny Street, the cinema was bought by Odean Theatres in 1957 and re-named Odeon in 1959, the cinema was closed in March 1974 before being demolished to make way for a car park.

In 1964, The Rolling Stones played two shows at the Penny Street cinema supported by The Yardbirds featuring Eric Clapton.

7. Rossendale Hospital

Lancashire Telegraph: Rossendale Hospital

Rossendale General Hospital was shut down over a period dating from 2006, finally closing in September 2010.

Opening in 1912, the hospital was established to support Haslingden Workhouse and was initially known as Moorlands Infirmary.

It was renamed Rossendale General Hospital on joining the National Health Service in 1948.

Services moved to the new Rossendale Primary Healthcare Centre, leading to the hospital's 2010 closure and was later demolished in 2013.

The site was sold to Taylor Wimpey to become a housing estate.

8. Lord Square, Blackburn


Lancashire Telegraph:

Lord Square was torn down in 2008 after a campaign fronted by the Lancashire Telegraph.

Described as the town's “biggest architectural atrocity”, the supposed centrepiece was built in the 1960s planning ‘revolution’.

Heralded as “ahead of its time”, critics said the building became a "terrible blot on the landscape of the town".

The site has now become home to the extension of The Mall and Blackburn Market.