DBBC employed a consultant to carry out a complete review of our services.

We interviewed past and present students to get their opinions.

The results were presented at a stakeholder event on August 21st 2013 when representatives were present from schools, Bolton Council, Jobcentre Plus and other voluntary organisations who use our services.

The following are some facts that were revealed:

The interviews represented 40% of all students in the last year.

32% indentified themselves as having a disability.

26% said they had mental health problems.

11% said they had long-term health problems.

63% stated they had no confidence before starting with us and wanted to learn new skills, but did not know how to go about it.

58% said they had no recent work experience.

11% said they needed re-training after being made redundant.

37% said they had suffered depression because they couldn’t see a way out of their circumstances.

Only 26% had been in full-time employment in the last 5 years.

11% said they had been a housewife looking after children and wanted to re-engage into employment or volunteering.

95% said they felt more confident after attending DBBC.

47% of participants had moved into positive activities.

Click here to download PDF of DBBC Consultation with Service Users / Stakeholders (August 2013)


5 September 2012

The offical presentation of the Queen's Award for Voluntary Service' was made by the Vice Lord-lieutenant of Greater Manchester, Michael Oglesby CBE, DL at Bolton Town Hall on September 5th.

Queen's Award for Voluntary Service Award


3 JUNE 2012

It was announced in the London Gazette that DBBC is to receive The Queen's Award For Voluntary Service, which has been presented every year since the Queen's Golden Jubilee in 2002.

This year a total of 107 Awards were made throughout the UK and just seven of those came to the north west of England. DBBC was the only voluntary group in Bolton to receive the Award.

Our founder, Dorothy, along with three of of our longest serving volunteers, represented DBBC at a Buckingham Palace Garden Party in May.




A Very Big Thank You

"I am obviously delighted. This recognition of our work will help to put DBBC firmly on the map.

The award really belongs to our superb team of volunteers, staff and trainees, who I value so much.

I also want to thank our Trustees who have supported the DBBC team and who nominated me.

I have always tried to make everyone who walks through our door feel special. They all are. If you feel valued by others, then your aspirations are unlimited.

In my youth I was a swimmer and a Bolton champion. I represented Bolton at many galas throughout the Country and I was - and still am - very proud of my home town.

I spent 25 years as a teacher at Smithills School, for much of that time working in pastoral care. I learned that although some students may not be academically motivated they still can become very successful, given the right environment.

When I retired from teaching I joined a radio group in Bolton that made short term radio broadcasts every year in the hope of gaining a full-time licence. It was there that I was asked by a former Smithills School pupil, Derek Knowles, if I would help him set up a new group called Variety Gold fm. We were also joined by two other stalwarts, Andy Haslam and the late Roy Worthington.

We managed to get premises in Ashburner Street Market where Nick Fisher, the Market Manager was very supportive of our efforts and Bolton at Home helped build the studios.

In late 1997, the Radio Authority announced that a local commercial licence would be offered to Bolton. We enlisted Cllr Frank White to chair the group and set about recruiting a management board. Meanwhile, our enthusiastic volunteers trained hard and started to broadcast to the Market every Saturday. This became known as Bolton Market Radio.

Unfortunately, the licence was awarded to another bidder and that could have been the end of the road. However, through this experience I had gained a deep appreciation of the special value of radio training and how it could hugely improve people's confidence. I decided that I would set up the charity DBBC with the objective of providing students with the skills and opportunities they needed to improve their lives and prospects.


Dorothy Martland

January 2012


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DBBC is a
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Queen's Award for Voluntary Service


"The award really belongs to our superb team of volunteers, staff and trainees, who I value so much."