Back in the late eighties when acid house filtered its way into UK club culture a group of like minded friends, who disenchanted by the lack of scene and dominance of commercial nightclubs in their hometown decided to put on their own events. Housed mainly in old vacant warehouses and units around the industrial backdrop of Blackburn, these events are now part of the fabric of the emergence of rave culture in the UK.
Initially the events were promoted to people in the know via word of mouth – flyers were often given out with a contact number to be called for rendezvous points and further instructions, often meeting in distant towns and cities across the North and travelling en masse in convoys to the various industrial estates dotted around Blackburn. The parties rapidly ballooned from a couple of hundred locals to thousands of likeminded youths from all over the UK.
The early raves were a success and predominantly trouble free, though as the scale of the events got bigger so did the pressure on Lancashire Police to get the parties shut down.
Live the dream
One of the last big events was ‘Live The Dream’ in Tockholes, an all-nighter that took place in September 1989, which saw in excess of 10000 people attend.
The Blackburn raves took place during a magical and non-pretentious era of dance music and rave culture. A culture that went onto inspire a generation of club promotors, musicians and DJs.