THE Lego replica of Darwen Tower has finally been finished and one of the first donations since its completion will go towards repairing the original.

The final piece of the plastic monument was put on place last week by Rotary club secretary Gil Riley,

As well as completing the project after more than two years, the purchase of the last of the 25,000 bricks on sale for £1 each ensured the charitable group reached its fundraising target.

While much of the £25,000 has already been given to local, national and international charities, the next donation will be to the 'Save Our Tower' fund set up by Rotary president-elect Alec Stuttard and linked to the Friends of Darwen Tower website collecting for urgent repairs to the Jubilee Tower on the moors above the town.

The friends' group has already raised more than £50,000 of the estimated £100,000 cost of essential works to the structure completed in 1898 to commemorate Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee.

It is expected that a Heritage Lottery Bid will be put in to complete the fundraising effort.

The Lego version will remain on display in Darwen Market Hall with a Rotary collecting box for donations, starting with the Jubilee Tower repair fund.

Rotary member John Jacklin, who dreamt up the project, said: “We are delighted to have achieved our objective.

“We have raised £25,000 for local, national and international charities. Now the finished tower replica will remain in Darwen Market hall for everyone to see for the forseeable future.”

The final piece was added after Darrener Harry Todd, who suffers from multiple sclerosis, raised £578 from a sponsored walk.

Most went to the town's St Cuthbert's Church and 15 per cent to the Lego Tower.

The project, started in September 2015, was conceived to mark the Queen becoming the longest serving monarch after Queen Victoria.

Darwen West's Cllr Dave Smith said: "This is great news and it's tremendous so much money has been raised.

"It is entirely appropriate that the first donation after its completion should go to the repair fund for the real tower."