The Darwen Tower was erected 120 years ago to celebrate Queen Victoria’s reign of, as then, 60 years hence the name Jubilee Tower and to celebrate the victory of local people to the right of access to the moors.
It was erected by public subscription was opened on the 24th of September 1898. It was designed by R W Smith-Saville. It is 25.9 metres tall (85feet). Views from the top take in North Yorkshire, Morecambe Bay and the Lake District, Blackpool Tower, Isle of Man, North Wales and Derbyshire.
The Tower is very exposed and has suffered over the years from weathering and vandalism. The top of the tower was blown off in 1947, 1971 and again in 2010. It has always been replaced and the last time it was with a coated stainless-steel replica kindly donated by WEC Limited a local company and was delivered by helicopter.
The weathering has now reached a point where the fabric needs some extensive attention and the Darwen Rotary Club have set themselves the task of raising £100,000 to enable the work to be carried out. To date £75,252.79p has been donated.
It is anticipated that the cost of renovation will be higher than this and a joint application was made by the Rotary Club and Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council to the National Heritage Lottery Fund to help with the repairs. Regrettably this was not successful. The Fund did not award a grant this time round. We will be meeting with them to discuss the weaknesses in the application and we have been told we can apply again next year.
Donations can be made at the collection boxes attached to the Lego Tower in Darwen Market or by cheque payable to Rotary Club of Darwen and remitted to Gorse Barn, Rock Lane, Tockholes, Darwen, BB3 0LX
or by visiting our Just Giving page Please note the Just Giving page has now closed.
October 2019 The Tower Restoration Fund is now registered with the Darwen Co-Op Community Fund. For the next 12 months, people registered as members will have 1% of their bill credited to the Tower Fund when they shop at the Co-Op.
To register go to https://membership.coop.co.uk/new-registration.
Please note this funding ended October 2020.
November 2019 As part of the project a video has been produced for distribution to schools as has a podcast giving some detailed history of the struggle for the freedom of the moors and the building of the Jubilee Tower.
These are designed to increase people's understanding of the significance and history of the Tower and should help as evidence for the Heritage Lottery Fund application.
They were launched at a public screening at the Darwen Library Theatre attended by over 200 people.
The Mayor of Darwen Cllr. Lillian Salton presented a cheque for £2,650.00 to the fund. This was the proceeds from the bucket drop at the Town Bonfire.
Stef Wolski and Brian Entwistle present a cheque for £235 raised from the sale of her photographs of Darwen Tower.
3rd August 2020 - Following the recent award of £250,000 from the Government Infrastructure Scheme, we have decided to close the project and withdraw our collecting boxes as there are now sufficient funds to proceed with the restoration of our beloved Tower.
With your help Darwen Rotary has raised over £88,000 towards the project.
The work on the Tower will take some time to organise, particularly in view of the present pandemic problems, so we don't expect work to begin before Spring 2001 unless there are some groundworks to improve access for the eventual passage of materials up to the Tower.
January 2021 - Part of the work involves re-pointing the entire building with lime mortar. This can only be done when the air temperature is constantly above 5°C, so will not commence until late spring or early summer 2021.
July 2021 - Work has started with scaffolding going up as repairs get under way.
more “The Darwen Rotary Art Competition was this year entitled “Colours of Nature”.
more Darwen Rotary are making a general appeal for funds to help with the refugee situation in the Ukraine. Donations can be made by cash at the collection boxes by the LEGO Tower in the Annexe to Darwen Market.
more Rebuilding the Peace Garden in the grounds of St Barnabas School
more Darwen Town Bonfire in aid of the Mayor's Charity. Held at Darwen Cricket Club to raise funds for Cancer Relief.
more Recently Darwen Rotary along with the Salvation Army has been helping to provide refreshments for the firefighters and workers helping to extinguish the terrible fires on the moors of Darwen.
more Denise visited the club to invite us to a breakfast event for the East Lancashire Hospital Trust's Charity and to tell us about its work.
more National Finals of the Rotary Young Musician competition
more Local heat of the RIBI Young Musician competition held at Darwen Vale School on Saturday 9th November 2013
more Donations to local groups from money raised by the sale of bricks in the Lego tower
more A small group of Rotarians visited the Anson Engine Museum at Poynton, Stockport.
more Garden Open Day to raise funds for Life Education in Lancashire and Cumbria together with other charities and good causes supported by Rotary.
more Following Darwen Rotary Club's visit to Bolton Mountain Rescue headquarters, President John presented them with a banner when they attended the Tower Trudge in June.
more Darwen Rotary supports RYPEN
more Presentation to school heads on the benefits of having a Rotakids group in school.
more Darwen Rotary Club's visit to Bolton Steam Museum
more This event together with the concert the week before raised over £3,000.00 for Cancer Research UK and other charities supported by Rotary