We are pleased to announce details of the six theatres to receive funding through the Theatre Improvement Scheme in association with Theatres Trust. More than £100,000 has been awarded to theatres to improve the sustainability of their buildings.

Norwich Theatre Royal will receive funding towards its Green Spaces project to install living walls and green roofing, a rainwater harvesting system and establish beehives. Eden Court in Inverness will improve its heating and ventilation (HVAC) system by installing modern, energy-efficient pumps.

Eastern Angles, the resident company at the Sir John Mills Theatre in Ipswich, and the Unicorn children’s theatre in London will both install solar panels on their building roofs. Two arts centres, Cast in Doncaster and Rich Mix in London, will upgrade their lighting to low energy LED lights.

The announcement comes as Theatres Trust, the national advisory public body for theatres, has launched its Environmental Principles to reshape its work and help to influence and improve the sector’s sustainability.

Paul Ramsbottom, Chief Executive of the Wolfson Foundation said: “We are delighted to be able to continue our work with Theatres Trust on this programme and to support the ambition of these six theatres from across the UK to improve the environmental sustainability of their buildings. This will have a direct economic impact and, in a wider sense, form part of civil society’s collective response to the climate crisis.”

Jon Morgan, Theatres Trust Director said: “As a socially engaged sector, the theatre industry has an obligation to do whatever it can to reduce the impact of its work on the environment. Theatres Trust has a vital role, ensuring that when we give guidance to any UK theatre or award grants, the environmental impact is a key consideration. We will challenge the need to develop where creative reuse or refurbishment are possible and encourage minimising of operational and embodied carbon.”

As this round of funding attracted an unprecedented level of applications, demonstrating the clear demand from theatres, Theatres Trust and Wolfson Foundation have agreed that improving environmental sustainability will be the theme for the next round of the Theatre Improvement Scheme.

Theatres can apply directly to the Theatres Trust for grants of up to £20,000 towards their building or equipment as part of the scheme. It is hoped that these grants will support a range of projects that consider different ways theatre buildings can reduce their environmental impact and funding will be given to projects that demonstrate how a small intervention can have a big impact. Deadline for applications is noon on 14 September 2020.

Further details can be found: theatrestrust.org.uk/grants


(Photo: Cast, Doncaster)