Birthday surprise for Spilsby theatre

They say its your birthday, well its my birthday too, yeah... Sally and Chris with the Henry Edward Kendall book. EMN-170604-143154001
They say its your birthday, well its my birthday too, yeah... Sally and Chris with the Henry Edward Kendall book. EMN-170604-143154001
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An exact age has been revealed for Spilsby Theatre – and in an extraordinary twist of fate the ‘birthday’ was discovered on the building’s 190th birthday and as a result of a birthday party held at the venue the previous evening.

The team behind Spilsby Theatre believed construction on the Grade II listed building was completed between 1824 and 1826.

This was, however, until Raithby by Spilsby couple Sally and Chris Cave attended a birthday party at the theatre on Saturday, April 1.

Sally, 41, and Chris, 37, told volunteers they found a book about the building when they moved into their home 10 years ago.

The house was previously occupied by Phil Stokes, who converted the former prison and courthouse into a theatre in 1984.

He had left behind a book belonging to Henry Edward Kendall, an architect who designed the building.

It revealed construction at the venue ended on Monday, April 2, 1827.

Sally said: “I had forgotten all about it. I feel bad that we haven’t taken it down to them sooner.”

On Sunday, April 2, Sally and Chris gave the book to the organisation behind Spilsby Theatre, the Sessions House Community Interest Company.

Bruce Knight, a director, said: “It gives us something to aim for, a 200th birthday, a celebration of heritage, community and culture on April 2, 2027.”

The book has come at a good time for Spilsby Theatre, as they are in talks with The Heritage Lottery Fund about regeneration plans.

Cat Henton, another director of CIC, said: “During their visit, the Lottery representatives, who loved the building and were impressed with our project, commented on how it would be helpful for us to discover more about the town’s important heritage site.”