The Theatres Trust

Southampton Mayflower chief executive to retire

9th February 2012

Dennis Hall, chief executive of the Mayflower Theatre in Southampton, is to retire after 26 years in the post. He will leave the venue on October 31 and the theatre is beginning its search for a new chief executive.

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Report highlights ‘serious flaws’ in UK arts building procurement

9th February 2012

A critical investigation into the construction of new UK arts buildings has recommended a radical shake-up of procurement. University of Cambridge researchers argued that the current national recommendations for using public money to build arts venues had ‘serious flaws’ and was responsible for the ‘disillusionment and loss of faith’ of individuals involved in such projects.

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Fight to save Workington Opera House still on, say campaigners

9th February 2012

A Workington pressure group fighting to save the town’s Opera House has denied rumours that its plans have stalled, claiming they are simply “on hold. The Opera House is owned by Graves (Cumberland) Limited, which submitted plans to demolish the Pow Street building and three shops below it and build apartments and shops. But Opera Action Ltd wants to transform the run-down building on Ladies Walk into a thriving theatre hub for west Cumbria.

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Felixstowe: Spa Pavilion campaigners given extra six months to save theatre

8th February 2012

There was no time for celebrations today for campaigners – despite winning a stay of execution for Felixstowe’s seafront theatre. Supporters of the Spa Pavilion have been given an extra six months to pull together a rescue plan but have been warned not to waste time. Last night Suffolk Coastal’s cabinet re-iterated its decision to withdraw funding and seek a commercial operator, charitable trust or similar body to run the 905-seat venue. But it agreed theatre operators Openwide Coastal Limited (OCL) could continue to run it until January.

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Living Wall for The Mermaid

8th February 2012

Mayor Boris Johnson announced last week as part of his cleaner air initiatives for London that a green ‘Living Wall’ is to be installed at The Mermaid Conference and Events Centre, subject to planning permission. The centre sits on one of London’s busiest and most heavily polluted roads and the thinking is for the green wall to not simply provide a visual attraction, but to trap pollutants.

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Uncertain future: £60k needed to stop Weymouth Pavilion closing

8th February 2012

The future of Weymouth Pavilion hangs in the balance as the council debates funding cuts. If plans to withhold an extra £60,000 of funding go ahead today the theatre could be forced to close. Weymouth and Portland Borough Council leisure spokesman and Labour councillor Andy Blackwood is against the decision and blames party politics for influencing the vote to pull resources. He said: “I want to highlight the fact that the vote at the management committee in December did not represent the views of the whole council.

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Anton Rippon: Knocking down the Hippodrome would be such a daft idea

8th February 2012

Derby Hippodrome, Bemrose School, and the Great Debate On Those Orange Bags For Recycling Your Cardboard – they are all matters that have been exercising me this week, writes Anton Rippon. Like many Derbeians, I’ve recently completed the survey about what to do with the dear old Hippo that has been vandalised beyond belief in Green Lane.

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Lenny Henry has joined fight to save Dudley Hippodrome

8th February 2012

Comedy star Lenny Henry has joined the fight to save an historic theatre in his home town which hosted some of the world’s biggest showbiz names. Celebrities including Bob Hope, George Formby, Laurel and Hardy and Morecambe and Wise all played the Dudley Hippodrome. But now it is set to come down after council bosses failed to find a company willing to take the venue on. Henry said: “The news has made me very sad. This 1,700-seat theatre was one of the biggest venues in the Midlands.

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Surrey's £26m G Live arts venue opened by Duke of Kent

8th February 2012

A plaque has been unveiled at G Live to mark the official launch of the arts venue. A new multi-million pound entertainment venue in Surrey has been officially opened by the Duke of Kent. G Live, in Guildford, which hosts music, comedy and family shows, opened in the autumn but the duke unveiled a plaque to mark its official launch.

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Wilton’s to re-bid to HLF following £700k SITA Trust grant

8th February 2012

Wilton’s Music Hall is to re-apply to the Heritage Lottery Fund for financial support for its renovation plans, after securing a £700,000 grant from the SITA Trust. Last year, the east London venue was thrown into crisis after the HLF rejected its application for £2.25 million. At the time, Wilton’s patron David Suchet warned that the theatre, which claims to be the oldest surviving music hall in the world, would have to close unless money could be found to refurbish it.

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