Preston’s Space Centre: a success story in the making

Posted on - 17th January, 2014 - 8:30am | Author - | Posted in - Ashton-on-Ribble, Charities, People

Space Centre - Reception


The Preston Space Multisensory Centre is the result of much planning and a great deal of hard work on behalf of the , staff and all who have been instrumental in creating this fabulous facility for people with special needs of any age range. Hilary Holden, the Fundraising Coordinator, said “Preston is very fortunate to have this magnificent multisensory centre which is the largest of its kind in the United Kingdom”.

Initially the centre needed millions of pounds for all the necessary refurbishments and extensions. However, following extensive fundraising efforts overseen by Hilary Holden, the centre now only needs around £145,000 to complete all the work necessary to accomplish their goal to have all three sensory rooms up and running. Currently, two of the three sensory rooms, space 1 and space 3 as they are known, are now complete and fully functional, leaving only Space 2 to be fully developed and fitted with the necessary equipment.

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Space Centre - Gardens

A view of the marvellous gardens looking towards the Space Centre building

The Space Centre is based in the building which, in the early 20th century, was owned by the Galloway family; George Galloway was a cotton magnate and mayor of Preston, 1890-91.
The centre still has many of the wonderful and original architectural features from the past, wonderful old oak panelling and ornate fireplaces being among them.
Not least of all though are the marvellous gardens designed by T.H. Mowson the architect of Ashton’s Haslam Park. These gardens remain much as they were originally constructed, multi-layered with fabulous stone masonry walls and arches. They make a superb place to just rest or simply walk around, especially when everything is in full bloom.

Space Centre - Music Room

The beautifully ornate and spacious conference room

Space Centre - Rainbow Passageway

The rainbow passageway offers an interesting and dry shelter between facility rooms

Among the fabulous facilities at the centre which they are very proud of are the two changing rooms. These are both fitted with state of the art equipment for visitors to have the best experience possible. There are tracking hoists to move people around the room to the shower area with a hydraulic bed, to the disabled toilet or to the specially designed wash area.

The changing rooms are not only for the use of people attending the centre for the day, they are also available to anyone in the area who may, for instance, be visiting the marina or in one of the local parks and have need to use these facilities whether they are slightly or severely disabled. Obviously, the facilities are only there for people who have special needs and disabled.


Space Centre - Changing Room

The Space Centre still needs to raise more funding and one way that people can help is to donate unwanted presents to the centre which enables them to raise money by either selling the gifts on stalls at various fêtes, auctions and at the gala balls held at the centre on certain occasions. So if you have any items that were presents you really didn’t need or want then why not take them along to the centre and donate them to raise money to complete the Space 2 multisensory room.

There is no doubt that everyone works very hard at the centre to make the experience for disabled visitors the absolute best possible and we can only say that they certainly have our seal of approval for all that they do.

Space Centre - Left To Right - Margaret Stanley, Facilitator - Hilary Holden, Fundraising Coordinator - Alison Shorrock, Centre Manager

The Space Centre team at the helm
(right} Alison Shorrock, Space Centre Manager (centre) Hilary Holden, Fundraising Coordinator
(left) Margaret Stanley, Facilitator –

Go along and have a look at what the Space Centre has to offer, you’ll be more that surprised at not only the facilities but also the wonderful ethos of the establishment and extremely friendly staff there to greet you.

The centre is located close to the Preston Marina (docks) and two lovely parks of Ashton. You can also visit their website for more information and their latest news.
They can be emailed on or contacted by telephone 01772 760403

The Space Centre, 10 Pedders Lane, Ashton,Preston. PR2 2TH

The Space Centre Patrons are:
Charles Kay-Shuttleworth, 5th Baron Shuttleworth – Lord Lt. of Lancashire
Sir Tom Finney, Stephen Bayliss, Jessica Taylor, John Gilomore and Bill Beaumont.

Let us know if you have ever visited the Space Centre and what you think of it, in the comments below.

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