A few weeks ago the team from Blackburn invited the children and me to take part in the Brickburn Paw Patrol trail (for disclosure we were given a voucher and goody bags). The trail opened today (23 August) and the children and I went across to Blackburn to take part.
Now, let me start by saying I really didn’t have particularly high expectations of Blackburn – it’s not a town I’ve spent much time in and we tend to travel into Cheshire for days out, rather than north into Lancashire. We had been there earlier in the week for the Elmer show but hadn’t stayed to look around. I did however really want to take a look at the trail – we love doing these sorts of things and find that they’re a great way to discover a new place.
So, from home in Stockport, it takes around 45 minutes to get to Blackburn, assuming you get the traffic on your side etc. I was advised to park in the Mall car park (Church Street, BB1 5AF), but there are plenty of parking spots in and around the town centre. We parked up on the Mall car park, and the parking charges were really reasonable (It cost us £2.50 and we were there for a good few hours).
Driving around the centre is pretty easy, and from the car park, we went into the Mall to pick up our Brickburn Paw Patrol trail maps.
Getting your maps
The Brickburn Paw Patrol trail maps are available from the ‘Ask Me’ point in the Mall (as well as in the library). We were given a map of where we could find the various figures and a Paw Patrol quiz sheet. Returning both of these, completed, to the Ask Me point sees you entered into competitions to win £100 of shopping vouchers.
At the Ask Me point is the first of the models – a brilliant replica of Marshall’s fire engine that has space for little ones to sit in. It was brilliant and the perfect way to start off the trail for us.
The Brickburn Paw Patrol Trail
The Brickburn Paw Patrol trail models are all indoors – in the Mall, shops, the leisure centre, the cathedral etc. The map makes the trail look quite big, and I did think we might have to drive to some of the ones on retail parks, but once I’d got my bearings a bit, I realised it was all walkable.
We got the models within the Mall (except the Debenhams one as we couldn’t find it at first) then headed out to St George’s Hall and the leisure centre. We then moved to the Cathedral area and Premier Inn before heading through the train station to the retail parks.
I was suitably impressed with the cathedral, and to my shame, didn’t realise Blackburn had a cathedral. It’s beautiful and we plan to head back in the next week or two to take a look around and do the Cathedral trail to learn more about this building.
After a few of the retail park ones had been found we stopped for a bit to eat before continuing on. We got the one at Argos before heading back towards the town centre and the British Heart Foundation Shop.
The final one we got was Chase inside Debenhams (he is upstairs) and we then went to hand in our forms to enter the prize draw.
The Brickburn Paw Patrol Trail models are AMAZING and the information boards at each one give you detail about how many bricks are inside, how many hours it took to build and other bits and pieces. Each one has QR code on too, which, if you scan shows you different things. I forgot about this until about 2/3 of the way around but there were some neat YouTube videos showing how they’re put together so they’re working snapping and watching.
There are 21 models to find and there are six kitten models in the indoor market. We didn’t get around to doing this trail as we were so tired from all the walking (we covered over 5 miles which is quite impressive for a three-year-old). You can read more about the Brickburn Paw Patrol trail here.
The detail of the models is superb, and the mosaic one in the Leisure Centre is really amazing when you startto explore the detail of the model.
Impressions of Blackburn
I was really impressed with Blackburn. The town centre is fantastic and the Mall and surrounding streets are packed with a range of shops (big names and independents). It was also really busy and bustling, which is nice to see as my own Town Centre can often feel a bit quiet. There looks to be a lot of development going on in Blackburn, and the leisure centre and some of the retail parks looked quite fresh and new.
The Cathedral looks fabulous and, as I noted above, we are planning to head back in a few weeks to do the tour there and explore Blackburn a bit more.
The Brickburn Paw Patrol trail is available until 1 September so it is well worth a look before the schools start back. If you go, let me know which is your favourite model!