ITEMS from derelict houses, asylums and hospitals have been used by an artist to create an “Abandoned Shop of Curiosities” in Blackburn.

The Victorian-style art exhibition by Jane Samuels, who grew up in the town, was created using a method called Urban Exploration, which involves taking items from forgotten buildings and showcasing them to share old memories.

Jane, 32, has transformed the former Vall Hall’s jewellers shop in Town Hall Square and is now encouraging people to catch a glimpse into the world of abandoned buildings and the history they contain.

She said she was inspired by finding items which otherwise could lie undisturbed for years but added the search was not always plain sailing.

She said: “In the process, you have to be quite careful.

“I’ve fallen through a couple of floors before and in really old buildings you have to watch out for things like asbestos.”

The exhibition is supported by Liberating Empty Terrain (LET), a Pennine Lancashire-wide project which uses empty shops to promote work in the arts community.

Visitors have also been invited by The Loiterers Resistance Movement (LRM), an arts group from Manchester, to bring along photographs or objects that reflect important events or memories in Blackburn.

The contributions will be analysed in personal mapping workshops to create two perso-nal history walks around the town to explore the hidden stories.

Jane said: “People should be able to enjoy this type of art regardless of whether they live in the bigger cities or not.”