Plymouth's Theatre Royal 'still has £1m to raise'

Theatre Royal, Plymouth
Image caption As part of the refurbishment, public areas outside the theatre will receive a makeover

Managers at a Devon theatre said it still needs to raise £1m to qualify for a grant for major refurbishment.

Plymouth's Theatre Royal has raised £1m but it needs to double that if it is to receive £5m from the Arts Council.

Adrian Vinken, the theatre's chief executive, has warned if they do not get all the money they will have to cut back on their plans.

The redevelopment will see the re-cladding of the building to cut energy costs as well as a new box office.

War Horse

The conditions for the Arts Council grant were that the theatre itself raised £2m and agreed to extend the venue's lease for an additional 15 years.

Theatre managers secured a further £2m from Plymouth City Council which owns the building.

Other proposals include an extension to the front of the building allowing level access, an outdoor terrace and a new studio space in the basement to provide space for young people and community groups.

Mr Vinken said: "There are other elements like the landscaping around the building, like some of the cladding and fit out internally that we would have to compromise on if we can't raise the full sum."

The planned works would begin in April 2013 if the theatre is successful in raising the additional funds.

The theatre would reopen in September 2013 with the launch of the first UK tour of the National Theatre's production of War Horse.

Phil Gibby, the Arts Council England's director for the South West, said: "This project will provide a boost to the Theatre Royal, creating more space and making the building more useable, more attractive and more energy efficient.

"This will benefit audiences, those who participate in educational activities at the theatre and contribute to Plymouth's culture and regeneration."

During the refurbishment work the Theatre Royal is looking at proposals to run an alternative theatre at TR2, the Theatre Royal's other site in Cattedown in the city.

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