Greenway Shelter in Sunnyhurst Wood


Heritage Category:
Listed Building
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Location Description:
Sunnyhurst Wood, Darwen


Ordnance survey map of Greenway Shelter in Sunnyhurst Wood
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The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

Location Description:
Sunnyhurst Wood, Darwen
Blackburn with Darwen (Unitary Authority)
National Grid Reference:


Shelter, 1912. Sandstone with iron roof structure and stone slate covering.

Reasons for Designation

The Greenway shelter, Sunnyhurst Wood, of 1912 is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons: * Architectural interest: it is a well-designed structure in a rustic vernacular revival style that utilises good quality materials with a high level of attention to detail; * Degree of survival: it survives largely intact and compares favourably with listed examples of shelters and bandstands; * Historic interest: in common with the related structures in Sunnyhurst Wood, it attests to the widespread rise of leisure activities in the late-C19 and early-C20 and which, provided via the philanthropy of notable local people, together preserve a set of contemporary public inscriptions; * Group value: as one of a group of listed Edwardian, municipal park structures, it benefits from a historic, spatial and functional group value, strengthened further by its relationship to the Grade II registered park itself.


Sunnyhurst Wood, a wooded valley with a brook running through it, was purchased by Darwen Corporation in the early C20 for the creation of a public park to commemorate the Coronation of Edward VII in 1902. Funds were raised by public subscription, through the efforts of Alderman John Tomlinson, Mayor of Darwen (1900-1902) amounting to £2600. Work on the park began in 1902 and involved the construction of a number of paths, additional planting and minor works to the stream. The opening ceremony took place on 2nd July 1903 performed by Mrs Shorrock, the Mayoress. Within a few months of opening, improvements were being made and benefactors were providing further amenities at their own expense; these included a fishpond, a shallow lake for paddling and toy boat sailing, an aviary and a sundial.

This stone-built shelter was presented by Charles Spencer Greenway in 1912. The Spencer family owned the Dobmeadow printworks. The slope immediately south of the shelter was remodelled with a semi-circular stone ‘plinth’ which could be used for seating as a bandstand, looking across the wide flat clearing where the concerts and entertainments were held. The shelter was used for the popular Café Chantante entertainments in the years around the First World War.


Shelter, 1912. Sandstone with iron roof structure and stone slate covering.

DESCRIPTION: octagonal structure with a conical stone slate roof comprising eight solid tooled and coursed stone columns with Tuscan-style capitals. The columns support a series of convex timber beams and eight radial joists support an octagonal king post with closely abutted rafters which show at the eaves. There is a perimeter stone kerb, now flush with the ground level. An inscription on the external face of one of the columns records the date August 1912 and the name of the benefactor in cursive script.


Books and journals
Hartwell, C., Pevsner, N, in The Buildings of England, Lancashire, North, (2009), 273
The Landscape History of Sunnyhurst Wood, Darwen: survey and report for Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council. By Dr Alan G. Crosby, 2007


This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.

End of official listing

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