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Coastal Team celebrates Arts Centre funding

Posted by on 25 April 2019 | Comments

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Southwold Coastal Community Team is celebrating after receiving another financial boost to support the development of projects contained within their Economic Plan.

Supported by the Coastal Community Team (CCT) and East Suffolk Council, Sole Bay Arts CIO has secured funding of £35,000 from the recent round of Coastal Revival Fund. This will support their ambitions for Southwold Arts Centre, based at St Edmunds Hall, to become a sustainable artistic, cultural and community venue for the town and surrounding local area.

The funding will enable the Arts Centre to install retractable seating to provide a multi-use and accessible venue, as well as increase its capacity from 220 to 260, whilst keeping the flexibility required for cabaret-style, church and community events.

Peter Adshead, Centre Manager, said: “This award marks the beginning of a new phase in the arts centre’s development and coincides with the appointment of new trustees, drawn from a broad spectrum of the local community, along with a new management board to deal with all operational aspects of the venue, with the required skills to enable the full community benefit to be fulfilled. Not only will the greater capacity enable the centre to attract more mainstream artists and theatre companies but will also lay the foundations for our planned business expansion into conference and larger cinema / theatre projects. Following consultation with hall users, the new seating will also improve accessibility for wheelchair users who will no longer be marginalised on the edges of the auditorium.”

This recent funding follows the announcement earlier this year that £15,000 of Coastal Revival Funding was awarded to Southwold Town Council for a feasibility study for the Southwold Boating Lakes; this project is also contained with the CCT’s Economic Plan.

The CCT, formed in 2017, is led by a steering group comprising representatives of Southwold Town Council, Reydon Parish Council, Southwold and Reydon Society, East Suffolk Council and other key business and community representatives.

The Coastal Revival Fund is intended to help improve the economic sustainability of coastal assets and coastal communities more broadly.