Using the words of the man himself, a strong message of thanks is being shared to all those who have kindly made financial donations to The Shakespeare North Playhouse.
Back in July a new ‘Donate button’ was launched on the Playhouse’s website to allow anyone who wished to make either a one off contribution or pledge a monthly direct debit to support the project. And in just 2 months nearly £2000 has already been raised.
Max Steinberg CBE, Chair of The Shakespeare North Trust commented:
“We have been really overwhelmed by the response we have had from the public – especially at a time when people have so much going on in their lives and many people are worried about their own household finances. The generosity shown already is definitely more than we expected and we are incredibly grateful for that.
Covid-19 has presented so many challenges for us all in our everyday lives and certainly the whole theatre and performance industry is really being tested. Whilst we are in an incredibly fortunate position that the majority of the funding we need is secured, we do have fundraising targets that we still need to work towards. We are under no illusion that this will be an easy task in the current climate but every single pound of support counts, and is very much appreciated and valued.”
The Playhouse will cost in the region of £30 million to complete, the majority of this has already been raised thanks to contributions from Knowsley Council (£12m), central government (£5m) and the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority (£10.5m). In addition, the project has also gained financial support from two national grant making Trusts (Garfield Weston Foundation and the Foyle Foundation) and most recently the Sir Ken Dodd Charitable Foundation Trust. In addition businesses in Knowsley can contribute through the Knowsley Chamber 100 Club.
Ian Tabbron, Chief Executive of The Shakespeare North Playhouse added:
“We have been working hard to gain even more support for this project and as more people become aware of what is happening in Prescot, we found ourselves getting queries from individuals about how they could get more involved. From people who might live locally to others who were originally Prescot and have happy memories of the town. And of course there were theatre lovers and Shakespeare enthusiasts too that just wanted to be part of this. Whatever the connection we realised there was a desire to contribute and help ‘make it happen’ so the online donation facility has created that opportunity.
We hope many more take the chance to contribute and help push this wonderful and ambitious project over the line!”
All of the funds raised will go directly to the Playhouse to support its construction and ultimately help to contribute to the successful running of the venue when it opens to the public in 2022.
The Shakespeare North Playhouse, which is currently being built in Prescot, will provide a wide ranging and contemporary programme of events and performances, along with an educational offer to engage and excite young and old.
At the centre of the new building will be a flexible theatre with capacity for between 320 and 472 seats, based on the iconic 17th century ‘cockpit-in-court’ design. This is particularly apt as Prescot was the only place outside London to have a purpose built theatre in Elizabethan times. This fact, and the areas fascinating links – via the Earls of Derby – to Shakespeare himself has paved the way for this major cultural development.
The Playhouse will also include an education programme, an exhibition and visitor centre and additional performance spaces including an outdoor performance garden dedicated to the late Sir Ken Dodd.
To make a donation, visit www.shakespearenorthplayhouse.co.uk/donate
You will also have the option to sign up to receive Shakespeare North Playhouse news, information and details about future events.