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Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds exceeds £50,000 fund-raising target in just four weeks




A theatre has surpassed its £50,000 reopening appeal target.

Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds launched 'The Show Will Go On!' campaign last month to allow bosses to prepare to lift the curtain once again on the historic venue.

Backed by an array of stars of stage and screen including Dame Judi Dench and Sir Derek Jacobi, the appeal today (July 6) stands at £50,400.

Pantomime Peter Pan at Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds, which stages an annual festive show. Picture by Aaron Weight
Pantomime Peter Pan at Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds, which stages an annual festive show. Picture by Aaron Weight

Owen Calvert-Lyons, theatre CEO and artistic director, said: "We are delighted to have reached our £50,000 target in just four weeks.

"This really is vital money to help us to survive the devastating impact of the coronavirus.

"I want to thank the people from all across our community who donated, including a whole raft of businesses, sponsors, patrons and supporters.

Owen Calvert-Lyons, artistic director/CEO of Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds. Picture by Mark Westley
Owen Calvert-Lyons, artistic director/CEO of Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds. Picture by Mark Westley

"Every section of our society has been financially impacted by this virus; that people still find the money to help us to survive demonstrates how important Theatre Royal is to our community."

The theatre, in Westgate Street, has estimated it will lose £300,000 in net income over six months due to the pandemic.

Today, the Government has unveiled a £1.57 billion package to help protect theatres and other cultural venues.

Mr Calvert-Lyons added: "The arts sector was right on the brink of collapse, so this rescue package is very welcome news.

"Now we await the detail of how this fund will be distributed and a timescale for reopening.

"We need indicative dates for when we are able to open our doors for live performance and to know if this will happen in time for the crucial Christmas period.

"I welcome (Culture Secretary) Oliver Dowden’s focus upon supporting cultural organisations which play a vital role in the heart of their community, but I also want to see this money reaching the freelance artists who are so vital to our industry."


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