Your chance to meet and exchange views

Published Monday 5 August 2019 at 12:31

Community Voices events are giving local people opportunities to share their views on living in Blackburn with Darwen.

When Darwen residents got talking at a Community Voices event last month, a couple of them realised that they had lived in the same street for years, yet had never met or spoken before. They found that they had lots in common, and made a new connection. At another event in the Bank Top area of Blackburn, some people talked about different ways that they are involved in volunteering – and invited others to join them.

The events, run by the Tim Parry Johnathan Ball Peace Foundation, also provide a chance to talk about issues which are sometimes considered difficult. People have discussed how much change there’s been in the borough over the last ten years, and how they feel about that. There have been debates about new communities moving into the borough, and other subjects to do with race, culture and belonging.

The Tim Parry Johnathan Ball Peace Foundation is a charity that was founded in memory of the two boys who were tragically killed in the IRA’s bombing of Warrington in 1993.

The Foundation’s lead facilitator Mike Waite said:

The events are a chance for everyone to speak out on key issues.  They are being run as part of the council’s social integration programme, Our Community, Our Future. Our next event has been organised with support from Blackburn YMCA’s New Beginning’s project. Everyone is welcome to come and share their views and ideas. You can register in advance – or just come along on the day and join in.

The next Community Voices is on Saturday 10 August, starting at 11am. Discussion and activities will run until about 1pm, and lunch will be provided. The venue for this session is the Quaker Meeting House on Paradise Street in Blackburn – postcode BB2 1LY.

This is one of Blackburn town centre’s ‘hidden treasures’, a historical building from the 1820s that people don’t often get the chance to see. Car parks are nearby on King Street and Feilden Street.

Other Community Voices events are scheduled for September and October, in venues across neighbourhoods in Blackburn with Darwen – click here for all the details.

The Peace Foundation is also organising Youth Voices events for young people aged 11 to 16, with the first event taking place on Monday 5 August at the Young People’s Service Daisyfield base.

To register for any of these events, or to find out more, phone 01925 581 231 or 01254 304597, or email

The Community Voices events are part of Blackburn with Darwen Council’s social integration programme, Our Community, Our Future. This is a three-year programme which brings together a wide range of local partners working together to strengthen relationships between people from different backgrounds, to help the borough become a place where diversity is valued and where people’s faith and cultures are understood and respected.

To find out more about Our Community, Our Future, visit the Council website or like the Our Community, Our Future Facebook page.

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