Art and Craft Market



Buy something truly special this Christmas whilst supporting local artists and makers.

A host of local artists andmakers will have a delectable and ecclectic mix of original artworks, unique and lovingly handcrafted items, and bespoke gifts for sale all under one roof!

Cafe will be open serving hot drinks and snacks.

FREE Entry

Do you have art products for sale? Contact

Lantern Making Workshops



Come along to The Bureau and work with a professional lantern artist to create a beautiful paper and willow lantern for the Blackburn Festival of Light Lantern Parade on 17th December.

Make an individual lantern to take home after the parade, or get together with a group to create a giant lantern as a group. Finish in a day or come back each week.

Suitable for age 5-95. Not compulsory to come with a child!! This is a messy gluey activity, so please wear suitable clothing. Lanterns will be stored at The Bureau until the parade, so no need to transport a wet lantern home . Children must be accompanied by an adult.


Fairtrade and Organic drinks and snacks for sale in The Bureau cafe.


Short film screenings- Throw Me To The Dogs & The Truants

Friday 25th November 2016 at 7:00pm



Screening of award-winning local short films ‘Throw Me to the Dogs’ and ‘The Truants’ by Blackburn based filmmaker Aaron Dunleavy, with cast and crew Q&A.

 Set and filmed in Blackburn, both films were entirely improvised, childhood inspired and street casted with non-professional local actors. Winning multiple awards, with praise from Academy Award winning director Danny Boyle, the films have been screened at some of the most prestigious BAFTA and Oscar® qualifying festivals around the world.


A troubled teenage boy, growing up in a dreamless wilderness, is stripped of his dignity as his father abandons him for the outside world which he is trying to retreat from.



Two teenage boys break free from school to embark on a dangerous adventure, as they truant their way across the threatening industrial landscape which surrounds them

Tickets £3


First 50 Advance tickets purchased receive a signed copy of a poster for one of Aaron’s award winning films.


his event is a fundraiser for the Bureau Centre for the Arts with Aaron kindly donating any proceeds  to the upkeep and running of this volunteer managed initiative.


13912848_1761856194072014_4394194690718186416_nPapergirl is a street art project originating in Berlin in 2006, which is now produced in cities worldwide. Art is collected from the creative community, exhibited, and then, in the style of American paperboys, rolled up and distributed by bicycle to random passers-by.


Papergirl Blackburn is open for submissions. Send us your art, photographs, screen prints, paintings, pros, design, poetry, collage, drawing and doodles. You can send as much work as you want. No bigger the A3 size and we can roll it. Papergirl Blackburn is open to everyone and all submissions will be exhibited for a week before delivery. To submit work write your name, website and Papergirl Blackburn on the back of your submission.


Deadline for Submission by Post 17th October 2016 • Deliveries in person 21st October 2016

Post your work to Papergirl Blackburn, 419 Revidge Road, Blackburn, BB18DF
Hand in to The Bureau Centre For the Arts, St John’s Church, Victoria Street, Blackburn, BB16DW


Exhibition starts at 7pm on Tuesday, 8th November
Exhibition ends on Wednesday, 16th November
Big Public Giveaway starts at 1pm on Saturday, 19th November

To see works submitted to date find our event and follow us on Facebook


Painting the Indian Gods. Don’t miss out on this stunning performance from Balbir Singh Dance Company!

Painting the Indian Gods

unnamedA stunning, visual and aural depiction of a panoply of Indian Gods, their stories, representations and incarnations invoked by a storyteller, musicians and an painting-the-indian-gods-smallartist painting live on stage.



The show is part of a double bill with Classical Indian music in the second half.

This performance is brought to you in partnership with Dance Across The North Strategic Touring Project.


Sunday 9th October

Doors 5.30pm, show starts at 6pm 


Suitable for ages 8+




Painting the Indian Gods

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,

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.

Bureau Makeover weekend

Bureau Makeover poster


If you missed the Bureau Clean Up weekender then maybe you can help  out his time? We are calling out to all those who want to support us to come along for one of these two volunteer days and help us out.

We want to present the world with an all new lovely shiny version of The Bureau, but we need your help!

Can you sand, paint, decorate, hang doors, wire, plumb, move boxes, clean, buff floors, organise, garden or generally make things look lovely? do you have a few hours spare that you’d like to give us? Come and join the team over the weekend to revamp The Bureau. There will also be tea, cake and good company.

If you can’t make it but want to support us, we are looking for donations of equipment for the kitchen, cafe and office so please get in touch if you think you have anything we might need, or know a company that will sponsor us with a donation of equipment.

Email for our wish list.

Not able to help that way either? Still want to help out? We are raising money to buy anything else we need here : I love The Bureau!

Paint the Town….. This Weekend!

“Paint the Town….. “is a challenge to artists of all ages and abilities- beginners, amateurs and professionals- to create a painting or drawing in a day with in Blackburn and the surrounding borough along the theme of Old and New.

Artists will need tPaint the town Poster2016o attend The Bureau Centre for the Arts on Saturday 10th September between 9am and 10 am in order to register,  to be allocated an exhibition space and to have their blank canvas authenticated with a date stamp. ( Don’t just turn up at 5pm with some work!)

Artists will then be able to go out into the surrounding area to their favourite location to produce a piece of work.

In case of bad weather we have arranged with some local businesses for an artist to be able to work from their premises. Please arrange this with us as we know how many places are available, and please also support these businesses by buying a tea or coffee from them in return! It is also possible to work within The Bureau itself.

All work will need to be returned to the building by 5pm and there will be a time slot allocated for any framing and hanging of work.

On Sunday from 12-4pm The Bureau Centre for the Arts will be open for an exhibition for members of the public to come and view and there will be a sale of any works that artists wish to sell.

The announcement of prizewinners will be at 1pm, with the presentation date TBC.

The categories are Junior, Senior, Heritage Townscape ( a particular area of Blackburn town centre, and a special prize for the best  image of The Bureau itself.

The exhibition will be open Thursday- Sat 11-4pm until 24th September.

Unsold work to be collected from 4pm-5pm on the 24th.