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Wilton's & Soho Theatre among beneficiaries of new Theatres Trust fund

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Wilton's Music Hall, Soho Theatre and the Royal Court in Liverpool are among the first theatres to benefit from grants awarded by the Theatres Trust's new small grants scheme.

The scheme, which opened for applications in May, helps theatres address "urgent building repairs, improve their operational viability, introduce environmental improvements, and enhance physical accessibility".

The Grade II Art Deco Royal Court Theatre in Liverpool receives £5,000 towards the replacement of its Safety Curtain, while Soho Theatre receives the same amount for the replacement of its front doors to improve the physical access.

The Grade II Georgian Sleaford Playhouse also receives £5,000 towards its fenestration project to return the playhouse back to its original Georgian appearance.

Wilton's Music Hall, which was formerly on the Trust's Theatre Buildings at Risk Register, receives £5,000 towards restoring its orchestra pit and carrying out urgent repairs to the timber floor in the auditorium.

Elsewhere, Oldham Coliseum receives £2,500 towards the redesign and replacement and the Half Moon Young People's Theatre in Tower Hamlets receives £2,000 towards a new lift to improve access between its entrance and foyer.

Rob Dickins, chairman of The Theatres Trust said: "We are delighted to be able to provide valuable help at a crucial time with these projects and further recipient theatres will be announced in the near future."

Acknowledging recent donations to the scheme by producer Judy Craymer and composer Andrew Lloyd Webber, he added: "This would not have been possible without the wonderful generosity of the Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation and top producer, Judy Craymer. I hope that more theatre professionals will follow their lead as I really want to be able to widen the level of financial support The Theatres Trust gives to theatres in need."

The Trust's Theatres Protection Fund, which funds the scheme, has received £50,660 to distribute this year - £25,000 each from Lloyd Webber and Craymer and £660 from a collection by J&C Joel from visitors at PLASA 2012.

Trustees of The Theatres Trust will meet again in December 2012 to consider further awards from the Theatres Protection Fund.


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