Fun Palaces 2016

Welcome to the Palace of Fun!


The Bureau – Centre for the Arts, is taking part in Fun Palaces, a national festival celebrating art and science activities for all ages.

Taking place in the converted church on Victoria Street, ‘Fun Palaces’ will see The Bureau provide a fun, free weekend of arts, culture and science activities for people of all ages to get involved with on October 1st & 2nd

Our theme for this year’s art and science fun is Bugs! If you want to get involved in any way- maybe giving a talk, or organising a bug hunt, demonstrating an experiment , showing a film or running an activity please get in touch- we are really keen to hear from YOU! ( Even if it doesn’t fit the bug theme!)

There will be also be a cafe with Fairtrade and Organic hot drinks, cakes and snacks available on both days, with the money raised going towards supporting The Bureau – Centre for the Arts.

The Bureau will be open both days from 10am – 4pm.

‘Fun Palaces’ is an annual, free, nationwide celebration of arts and science that helps brings communities together.

Joan Littlewood and architect Cedric Price came up with the concept in the sixties; they wanted a temporary and movable home for the arts and sciences, open and welcoming to all, labelling it as a ‘laboratory of fun’. The idea could never happen back in 1961 and funa_palaces_a5-rev-2016so it was later brought to life in 2013 by Stella Duffy and Sarah-Jane Rawlings.

The event is becoming increasingly successful. Last year there were 138 local, temporary Fun Palaces across the UK and beyond, made by local people for their own communities.

For more information on the event, visit

or email


Fun Palaces Micro Commissions


The Bureau Centre for the Arts is a volunteer run arts centre in the old St John’s church, in the heart of Blackburn, whose vision is to create a space for arts and culture in order to provide accessible opportunities and build creative communities.

The Bureau offers a wide range of arts and creative engagement programmes, activities, events and performances for people of all ages and backgrounds from Blackburn and the surrounding areas. The team of volunteer Directors who lead the organisation are passionate about affecting change within the borough in terms of the arts offer and people’s perceptions of what the arts are for and the benefits of their engagement.


The event

At The Bureau Centre for the Arts we will be hosting our second Fun Palace event on Saturday 1st and Sunday 2nd October from 10am-4pm.

Fun Palaces are made by local people for their own communities, bringing together arts and sciences, free and fun, linked by the Fun Palace network

Fun Palaces are a national movement of people who believe in the genius in everyone, in everyone an artist and everyone a scientist, and that creativity in community can change the world for the better.

We believe we can do this together, locally, with radical fun – and that anyone, anywhere, can make a Fun Palace.

Fun Palaces are about creating and making together: they are a space where arts and sciences, crafts and technologies, fun and learning meet, working alongside and working together. They are as much about the process of creating with your community as they are about what happens on the weekend itself.


What we are looking for:

We have four micro commissions of £50 available for the delivery of a 4 hour session on either Saturday 1st or Sunday 2nd October, and may have a little extra available for materials.


We are looking for passionate people in the community who want to run an activity, give a talk, and share their skills and knowledge which is arts or science based. We have a bug theme going on this year so if you have any creepy crawly art ideas, know about the science behind bacteria, or can make a bugging device we are interested!


Your idea needs to fit the Fun Palace guidelines, that each Fun Palace is :

  • Free (for people to participate)
  • Local (ideally made by local people, for local people)
  • Innovative (a space or a place doing something they don’t usually do)
  • Transformative (changes the nature of the place it happened in)
  • Engaging (so there is something for everyone, all ages, all abilities, to DO, not just observe/audience)

How to apply

To apply please email a brief outline of your idea, with any relevant images; your name and age; any relevant experience to


Applications needs to be submitted by Friday 23rd September

You will be contacted about your ideas by Monday 26th September

You must be available on either the 1st or 2nd October to deliver your activity.