Emmaus Burnley’s steering group formed in 2005 with the aim of opening an Emmaus community to alleviate homelessness in Burnley.
Spearheaded by former MP Peter Pike, the group successfully bid for a grant from the Department of Communities and Local Government. This allowed Emmaus Burnley to purchase and renovate Booth Court, which had previously been flats for older people.
The site was renamed Emmaus House, and when another funding bid was successful, it allowed the group to employ the support staff required to be able to accommodate our first companions.
Emmaus Burnley officially opened in January 2011, becoming the UK’s twentieth Emmaus community, twenty years after the first. Meanwhile, a separate site for the shop, a former primary school close by on Ivy Street, was obtained and the hard work of companions and staff meant that the shop opened just two months later.
The Emmaus Burnley community gradually built up to its full capacity of 24 companions and we are working towards a point where the income from the social enterprise will be able to fully sustain our charity.