Doing it for Joan - Disabled Washroom Facilities

by theoldcourts in Wigan, England, United Kingdom

We did it
On 12th December 2017 we successfully raised £1,495 with 27 supporters in 28 days

To build a disabled washroom on the ground floor to allow Arts for All in memory of Joan Blackburn. #doingitforjoan

by theoldcourts in Wigan, England, United Kingdom

New stretch target

Owing to the massive and unexpected success of ourCrowdfunder campaign, we're extending our stretch target to £2,000.

The extra money will allow us to create a disabled toilet inour Victoria Court Room meaning that another area in our old building will beaccessible to everyone. 

The Project

Please help us raise funds to enable greater access to the Arts and Culture in Wigan with help towards the completion of a disabled toilet on the ground floor of The Old Courts. 

We have raised funds over the last couple of years to provide ramp access and motorised access to all 4 floors of a Victorian building that was very inaccessible for wheelchair users and members of our community for whom stairs are disabling.

In August 2017 we started fundraising again at the request of Joan Blackburn’s family and friends following her passing with the aim of achieving a common goal that Joan was passionate about – Arts for all. Funds raised on this page will be used to build and modify a section of The Old Courts Arts Centre, in particular within the Bailiff Bar area to provide disabled washroom facilities allowing ANYONE to enjoy live music, spoken word and many other types of events that Joan was passionate about. A staunch supporter of the arts, Joan was delighted to witness progress made on The Old Courts quest for disability access. This included the fabrication of an access ramp and more recently, the purchase of a wheelchair stair-climber (which we haven’t fully announced as we don’t yet have washroom facilities). The designated toilet facilities throughout the building are the last piece of the jigsaw and this project particularly focuses on the Bailiff Bar level first.

What we Need

We have so far raised £500 from friends and family of Joan’s and from our loyal customers but we need a further £1000 to make this project a reality. This can and will be a reality. Please help us by sharing our page.

About Us

For those who don’t know us, we are a not for profit arts centre who promote the best in arts and culture in the Wigan Borough. With two music venues, a theatre, an art gallery, Victorian Court Room, arts space, rehearsal rooms, performance space and flexible space we cater for everyone’s needs.

We host a variety of events within our walls as well as private parties and weddings. Events range from intimate music gigs, festivals, theatre and dance shows to workshops, weekly classes, art socials and exhibitions.

Not many people are aware that we are a community interest company and that 100% of our profits go back in to the project, the arts, the community and the upkeep and improvement of the facilities. Profits support arts and wellbeing activities including: drama classes, School Of Rock sessions, over 50s jamming sessions, music therapy, crochet and felt workshops as well as supporting creative businesses and individuals who need training and work experience which enables development of arts and culture across the borough.

We believe we can make a big difference to Wigan and the local arts scene. We really want to engage with likeminded people who want to get involved in The Old Courts so if you have an idea or thoughts on our facilities and activities please get in touch.

Since we opened our doors to the public in October 2014, we’ve grown and flourished and are now attracting worldwide performers and artists as well as collaborating with renowned institutions such as Battersea Arts Centre and Central St Martins. To list these centres of artistic excellence as partners really is a milestone in our progress to date, long may it continue!

If you’ve never been to The Old Courts, we would love to meet you.  We’re a friendly bunch and so are our customers. In fact, one thing which we are particularly proud of is the diversity of our guests – we’ve had babies to 96 year olds from all different backgrounds attend events here so one thing we are sure of is that you will fit in here and have a good time.



What People Think of Us:

Customer Stephen Highton:
"3 years ago Wigan as a venue for live music was very poor. The Old Courts really is a superb asset to the town. Hosting various nights of poetry crafts and musical events there is something for everyone. They have announced upcoming gigs including: The Vibrators, Fairport Convention, The Icicle Works, Roddy  Radiation
The Houghton Weavers. It was unthinkable that bands/ artists of this stature would grace our town a few years ago. The Old Courts really does deserve this towns support. Get out and support live music and local venues."

Customer Laura Owen:
"Took my children to see 'how time flies ' they were transfixed with the actors and loved the interaction and have talked about it non stop since, enjoyable for any age, excited to see future events here as we will definitely be returning."

Customer Laughing Bear:
"Relatively new to the entertainment scene, Wigan Old Courts is quickly getting a good reputation for providing artists with a great facility to show off their talents. Each weekend seems to have a full timetable and a varying one at that with music or arts to suit all tastes."

Customer LeeDSimo:
"Great venue with a wide variety of events. The staff are helpful and friendly and drinks are well priced from the bar. Be sure to check out the Bailiff bar after the event!"

Edward and Eliza Theatre Show: 
"Once again, may I say a big thank-you from all of us to all of you. Everyone of your staff was extremely helpful and did their best to make us feel welcome and at home, and you don't get that everywhere. So it's much appreciated." 


This project offers rewards in return for your donation.

£5 or more

1 of 100 claimed

£5 Reward

Personal Thank You on North Korea Exhibition postcard. We recently had a North Korea Exhibition featuring original artwork, photographs and propaganda posters from North Korea. To thank you for the donation we will send you a personal thank you on a unique exhibition postcard.

£10 or more

1 of 100 claimed

£10 Reward

Personal Thank You on an Old Courts ‘From Graft To Glory’ postcard. Those who have visited The Old Courts may have seen our huge mural in the Grand Vault, well we've created a postcard of it with the caption 'From graft to glory'.

£15 or more

2 of 30 claimed

£15 Reward

Behind the scenes tour of The Old Courts. This relaxed tour will take you around the building into places and rooms that the public don’t normally see including the ‘Green Room’ which has hosted various big name artists. You’ll also take a peak in the Victorian prison cells and cellars as well as having a nosey behind the scenes in the theatre space. At the end of the tour have a take in our gallery space and enjoy a tea/ coffee.

£15 or more

5 of 25 claimed

£15 Reward

We recently had an exhibition featuring original artwork, photographs and propaganda posters from North Korea. Claim copies of collectable North Korean propaganda posters which were originally hand-painted in Mansudae Art Studios, Pyongyang. These works were shown as part of a unique exhibition in our Isherwood Gallery by explorer Dylan Harris that coupled the political works with his own striking photographs of his time in the guarded state.

£20 or more

0 of 150 claimed

£20 Reward

2 x tickets for ‘Doing it For Joan’ Festival. As a thank you for your donation we will send you two tickets for our 'Doing it for Joan' Festival. The date of the gig is Saturday 3rd March in the Grand Vault here at The Old Courts at 5pm. The evening will feature a variety of artists and will be a vibrant celebration of the local music scene.

£25 or more

2 of 50 claimed

£25 Reward

An Old Courts ‘From Graft To Glory’ T-shirt. Those who have visited The Old Courts may have seen our huge mural in the Grand Vault designed by Dominic Foster of Liverpool Sound City Festival as a grand opening gift to us - Well we've created a t-shirt design featuring it with the caption 'From graft to glory' which we feel perfectly captures the ethic of The Old Courts and the brilliant people we meet here.

£60 or more

0 of 1 claimed

£60 Reward

2 x tickets for folk legend Peggy Seeger with signed CDs. Peggy will also be doing a meet and greet at the end of the show. Friday 1st December at 7.30pm in the Court Room at The Old Courts. This is a seated concert.

£120 or more

1 of 100 claimed

£120 Reward

Thank You brass plaque at The Grand Vault entrance hall. As a thank you we will have a brick sized brass plaque specially made with your name, family name, business name or an 'in memory of' name which will be mounted on our polished brick entrance wall in our main venue - The Grand Vault.

£150 or more

0 of 1 claimed

£150 Reward

2 tickets for a private meet and greet on Tuesday 13th March 2018 with rock and roll poetry legend Dr John Cooper Clarke here in the Theatre at The Old Courts. This is a superb, unique opportunity to meet one of the true cultural characters of the last 50 years. Seats in the sold out gallery of our theatre.

Got an idea like this?

Our crowd has raised over £70 million for bright ideas and good causes.