Theatres Trust grants support long-term viability of UK theatres

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Theatres Trust has supported 14 theatres across the UK through its small grants programme, in partnership with The Linbury Trust.

Some £64,000 (€75,000/$83,000) has been donated to fund projects that will aid accessibility, repairs and upgrades to key plant and machinery, and crucial projects that help to ensure the long-term survival of the venues. 

The MAC Belfast will use the funding to purchase a new, inclusive foyer announcement system that will operate across 10 areas within the building. Lighthouse in Poole will install push-button doors for wheelchair access to the stage and orchestra pit. 

Ledbury’s Market Theatre will purchase a mast lift for tech team accessibility while Lichfield Garrick and Theatre Deli Sheffield will install hearing loops in their auditoria. 

Southwold Arts Centre will enhance accessibility front of house and will also purchase equipment to improve its digital programme. The Courtyard in Hereford will repair its wooden floors in areas such as the dance studio, to ensure the safety and enjoyment of users. 

Milford Haven’s Torch Theatre is set to install a new air conditioning unit in its ground floor café/gallery space, while the Hope Mill Theatre in Manchester and The Gateway Theatre in Seaton will also upgrade their air conditioning systems. 

Sustainability has also been factored into theatres’ long-term viability, with Barn Theatre in Welwyn Garden City, Duchess Theatre & Chatsworth Arts Centre in Long Eaton, Little Theatre Gateshead and The Mowlem Theatre in Swanage all upgrading to LED lighting across various areas of their buildings. 

Jon Morgan, director of Theatres Trust, said: “Theatres Trust is proud to support these 14 theatres with small but important projects, great examples of the different ways theatres are looking to future-proof their operations and remain at the heart of their communities.”

Stuart Hobley, director of The Linbury Trust, added: “Theatre spaces bring such incredible value to community life, and we’re thrilled to support these theatres, right across the UK, helping them to thrive, improve accessibility, and continue to share the joy of arts and culture with the local people.”

The Small Grants Programme will reopen for applications in early September, with a deadline of January 12.