A COMMUNITY group has revealed repair work to Darwen Tower could cost £100,000.

The 120-year-old landmark was closed last Friday after a routine inspection revealed a loose section of concrete and surrounding masonry stone on the underside of the tower’s top viewing platform.

A spokesman for Friends of Darwen Tower said they had commissioned an independent survey on the tower which revealed the extent of the work needed to make the tower safe.

She said: “Friends of Darwen Tower estimate that the costs could get as high as £100,000 and we are working with the borough council to get actual costs together as soon as possible.

“As the tower is a Grade II-listed building, all repairs, like repointing, will have to be done by qualified contractors.

“The survey said the building’s condition is fair, but a high standard of planned maintenance and repair are essential to conserve this important building.

“There have been no significant repairs to the tower over the last few years and our aim is to get this renovation done properly so we can pass this precious icon of our hometown onto the next generations in better condition than we found it.”

The group has set up a JustGiving page with a fundraising target of £50,000 and will be launching the sale of Darwen Tower models.

The spokesman said: “On Monday 120 limited edition, locally handmade, individually numbered bronze tower models that celebrate 120 years since the building of the tower will go on sale.

“All the profits from the sale of these models will go towards the essential repairs.

"There is also be a stall at the Festival of Making demonstrating how the towers were made.

“The tower models will go on sale for £120 each which will generate £9,000 profit once they have all been sold.

“We are also investigating Heritage Lottery funding and speaking with other charities who may be able to help.”

The towers will be sold in two batches of 60 and will be available from Work at Over Darwen House in Railway Road, Darwen.

For more information or to support the tower fundraiser, visit justgiving.com/crowdfunding/help-repair-darwen-tower.