We present the results of a photometric and astrometric study of the low-mass stellar and substellar population of the young open cluster Blanco 1. We have exploited J-band data, obtained recently with the Wide Field Camera (WFCAM) on the United Kingdom Infrared Telescope (UKIRT), and 10-year-old I- and z-band optical imaging from CFH12k on the Canada–France–Hawaii Telescope (CFHT), to identify 44 candidate low-mass stellar and substellar members, in an area of 2 deg2, on the basis of their colours and proper motions. This sample includes five sources which are newly discovered. We also confirm the lowest mass candidate member of Blanco 1 unearthed so far (29MJup). We determine the cluster mass function to have a slope of α = +0.93, assuming it to have a power-law form. This is high, but nearly consistent with previous studies of the cluster (to within the errors), and also that of its much better studied Northern hemisphere analogue, the Pleiades.