Repairs boost for theatre as arts grant helps with costs

Theatre: Fundraisers in action.

Theatre: Fundraisers in action.

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Members of Bawtry Dramatic Society are celebrating after being awarded a £35,000 Arts Council grant towards essential repairs to their theatre roof.

The £70,000 theatre roof project includes converting the flat roof above the stage and replacing the old pitched roof above the auditorium.

Work was due to start after the theatre’s production of Find the Lady finished its seven-night run last month, and the project is scheduled to be completed in time for the opening of the theatre’s new film season in September.

Theatre director Bob Geeson said: “The building is a former chapel and was first opened as a theatre in 1983.

“The roof above the auditorium is the original old chapel slate roof, dated 1837, and damaged by fire in 1964.

“The flat roof over the stage area has needed high maintenance over the last 10 years and has been a drain on funds.”

The redesigned replacement roof over the auditorium and stage areas will incorporate new storage space, supports for lighting, sound, electric film screen and curtain tracks.

Air conditioning and better ventilation will be installed.

The theatre usage has grown in the last five years, said Mr Geeson.

The balance of the £70,000 project costs will come from Bawtry Dramatic Society reserves and from fundraising events carried out by members, including a sponsored cycle ride, skydive and ceilidh. Another £1,000 is being donated by Tickhill Lions.

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