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The Billy Project is a funded gym project aimed at women and girls aged 16+.

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The Billy Project is a funded gym project aimed at women and girls aged 11+

Our service operates Monday - Friday 11am-4pm

Service users receive a full gym induction, gym program, regular program reviews and their weight and measurements monitored.


We also support with nutrition and supplement advice. 

We welcome referrals and self referrals.

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The Billy Project is a small project based at the  award winning, well established Blackburn gym, Unit 2 Fitness for Women.  We offer a wide range of fitness activities targeted at inactive, vulnerable local women and girls from areas of high deprivation. We work with a team of referral partners from existing projects in the Blackburn with Darwen community. 


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Our story

The Billy Project CIC is an award winning, trauma informed grassroots Community Interest Company in Blackburn with Darwen; Lancashire an area of high social and economic need. 


We provide gym based, health and wellbeing projects for vulnerable women suffering from poverty in a BAME community; we help members  of the LGBTQ+ community; domestic abuse victims and those suffering from substance misuse; we also support people with poor mental health, depression or anxiety whilst offering support for people with a wide range of vulnerabilities.  We tackle inactivity and isolation as well as empowering females to make positive life decisions.  We take referrals from over 60 local partner organisations and services plus offer a self referral service. 


We are proud of our Billy Project Junior sessions for 11 – 17 year old girls.  We work closely with women who can’t afford to use mainstream gyms and help with confidence issues and to rebuild their trust. We support single mums and provide respite for females with different illness or escaping addiction or in recovery from bullying. We have beneficiaries with Cerebral Palsy, Down Syndrome, wheelchair users and from the deaf community.


Our initial aim when established in 2016 was to provide a fully funded gym service to vulnerable women who were struggling with issues surrounding deprivation and poverty. Since then we have become so much more, supporting holistic needs.

Our approach is  flexible, amending our services to meet the ever changing needs of the local community. 


Our current services are

• Fitness sessions including gym use, group sessions, bootcamps and 1:1 personal trainer sessions

• Group exercise sessions for specific vulnerable groups such as the deaf community

• Billy Project Junior sessions 

• Access to funded fitness qualifications 

• Accredited fitness courses in partnership with Blackburn College

• Mini Movers fitness for mother and toddlers 

• Nature walk and talks

• Menopause support 

• Calorie Champion

Responding to the economic crisis, we also offer the following  for the whole community, not just females:

• Community fridge open every week day

• Hygiene bank

• Warm healthy meals taken away or eaten at a local cafe

• Free data sim cards​

• Utility Vouchers

Our staff and volunteers are fully DBS checked and have lived experience and a wealth of knowledge and skills between them. 


 Some of our qualifications include-


• Level 3 personal trainer

• Nutrition

• Trauma informed training

• Safeguard adults and children

• Mental health first aid

• Suicide awareness

• Drug and alcohol training

• Food hygiene level 2

• Behaviour management

• How to handle conflict 

• First Aid in the workplace


• Covid rehabilitation 

• Prescribed exercise

• Hidden Harm 


As a project, we seek to help protect women and families through safeguarding and provide a safe space to meet new friends whilst offering emotional support. We have found that if parents are happy, this trickles down to the wider family and promotes a happier, healthier home.


The project is not only exercise based but we offer the opportunity to talk, offload and receive much needed emotional support from supportive gym members, staff and friends.


The Billy project is named after gym owner & co founder of the project, Leanne Procter’s late father, Billy Procter.  Billy himself was a vulnerable adult after being left disabled after a long battle with lung cancer.  If Leanne’s father didn’t have the support from his family he would have been an easy target for people to take advantage of. Leanne’s idea was to create a gym family to support vulnerable adults.

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