THE CENTRE FOR BUSINESS
Tel: 0797 620 6116
Left vacant and unused in 2005 the building rapidly deteriorated and was in danger of being lost to decay & neglect.
Following three years work to restore what could be saved throughout, the buildings future is again secure.
The restored front portico reflects the original style of the Victorian architect and provides a grand entrance to the original mosaic hall & stairway.
Rollover to glimpse inside…
The tiles are a fine example of late Victorian design, and create a warm welcoming entrance.
St Peter’s Church predates Holker House and to this day remains a fine Victorian house of worship.
Also known as the Hippodrome, this was demolished @1970 and replaced with a petrol station & car showroom.
This is the earliest photograph showing the extension added in the early 1950s.
Medical Officer of Health Dr George Hindle had Holker House built in 1871 to the design of George Wightman of Darwen. He named it after Holker House, the family home of the Hindles in Hoddlesden which was built in 1591.
The place name Holker is made up of two Old Scandinavian elements: firstly hol meaning hollow or valley and secondly kjar meaning marsh. Together the place-
Later it was owned by Doctor James T Ballantyne. Dr Ballantyne, a Mayor of Darwen between 1898 – 1899, and leading light in the Darwen Medical Society, appears to have been an interesting character as this extract from the BMJ reveals:
He also left his legacy in the town when, to celebrate his Mayoral term, he presented the town with an illuminated clock, which remains affixed to the face of the tower above the main entrance to the town Market.
Subsequently it became the Divisional Education Office for Darwen Division until 1974, when it became the Area Education Architects' Office. From 1985 until 2005 it was used by Blackburn College. Unfortunately, it was abandoned by the College and allowed to fall into disrepair until acquired in late 2007 by the current owner.
The building is now used as office space and there are plans to offer services to community groups through the
If you have pictures or memories of your time at Holker House, please share them with us. We would love to share them here so that they may be preserved and enjoyed by future generations.