Cash to fund vital work at historic theatre
RICHMOND’S Georgian Theatre Royal has received a grant of £20,000 that will help it to become more environmentally sustainable.
The money will be used to replace old boilers and improve the ventilation and heating system at the Grade I listed building.
The Georgian was one of five venues across the country to be awarded grants as part of a £100,000 improvement initiative by Theatres Trust, in partnership with the Wolfson Foundation.
The work coincides with the ongoing auditorium development project at the Georgian, funded by the Hamish Ogston Foundation, which was given the green light last year to provide new more comfortable seating and improved views of the stage. Construction has taken place during the enforced Covid-19 closure period and is scheduled for completion this spring.
The money from Theatres Trust is in addition to other grants from the Pilgrim Trust, the Foyle Foundation and the Normanby Trust that are also supporting the heating and ventilation work.
Clare Allen, chief executive of The Georgian Theatre Royal, said: “We are extremely grateful to the Theatres Trust and Wolfson Foundation for this very generous donation.
“The previous system was only operating at around 65-70 per cent efficiency so this will not only provide a much greener solution but one that will also give vastly superior results. It is the icing on the cake that the replacement of the building management system can take place alongside the main work to the auditorium.
“We are hugely grateful to all our funders for supporting a collective funding package that means that when our doors do finally open, we will be able to enjoy a smart, comfortable auditorium with better air quality and a well-regulated temperature.”
Before the pandemic took hold, the biggest challenge facing the theatre sector was responding to the climate crisis. Theatres Trust, the national public advisory body for theatres, remains committed to this priority. Theatres, like all public buildings, have an impact on the environment, with major energy consumption coming from heating, ventilation, stage machinery and lighting, and many theatres do not meet modern environmental standards.
Jon Morgan, director of Theatres Trust said: “Despite the immediate issues caused by Covid-19, it is imperative that we continue to focus on the long-term environmental sustainability of the theatre sector. Theatres Trust is delighted to be able to support The Georgian Theatre Royal in its quest to be more sustainable.”
The Georgian Theatre Royal hopes to open for historic guided tours and live performances as soon as it is safe to do so and Government guidelines allow.