Both theatre staff and theatregoers were shocked this past May by the announced closure of regional powerhouse, the Leicester Haymarket (See News, 20 May 2003). At the time, a spokeswoman said that the emergency decision for indefinite closure was taken in order to avert a financial crisis and stem losses, which, for the last financial year, were estimated at £450,000. We've now had word that Arts Council England has awarded the Haymarket £1.327m of recovery funding to allow it to reopen in 2004 ahead of the launch of Leicester's grand new performing arts centre in 2006. In the meantime, though the Haymarket closed most areas of its building to the public on 18 July 2003, staff are organising a grand send-off party to which all and sundry are invited. The bash takes place in Leicester on Sunday 24 August 2003. Tickets cost £6. For more information, visit the party website.