DART - DACA Art Gallery

In June 2010, a group of students from Darwen Aldridge Community Academy opened a new art gallery in the heart of Darwen town centre.

Having led their own bid to the Youth Opportunities Capital Fund, successfully receiving an award of £35,000, they purchased a lease and renovated 50 Market Street to create a bright, modern and inviting space which could be utilised by students of the Academy, other young people and whole community.

Run as a Community Interest Company, both sixth form students and staff of the Academy sit on the Board of Directors.  Work is exhibited by students and local artists, and all creations on display are individually priced and available for purchase, with a percentage of the selling price going back into the social enterprise.  In addition, a teaching space on the first floor provides space for artistic workshops, allowing local schools and the wider community to develop their creative skills.

DACA teaches a large number of gifted and talented art students, and the DART Gallery is a perfect example of students combining their passion with the entrepreneurship specialism of the Academy to create real enterprises that can benefit themselves and their community