Bold new plans for Spilsby Theatre

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SPILSBY Theatre has announced bold new plans to expand upon its presence in the local community and to draw wider audiences from further afield into the town.

Theatre caretaker and performer Bruce Knight informed Spilsby Town Council of his plans expand upon what he and his colleague Jane Scott have achieved in their first year in charge of the venue.

Speaking at the Franklin Hall on Thursday, Bruce said: “It’s been a really slow start and we are not really up and running and in the way I would like yet.

“We are looking at how we can develop in new ways to make bigger and better known projects that will encourage people to visit Spilsby.

“It does seem like the doors to Spilsby Theatre have been closed for a very long time and need to be opened up again.”

As performers in the ‘Theatre of Now,’ Bruce and Jane hope to follow in the footsteps of the organisation’s founding member Jonathan Kay who has established a highly successful community drama festival called the Winchester Hat Fair.

Although Bruce conceded he and Jane may not succeed in creating anything on the same scale as the Winchester Hat Fair, he did feel that a similar enterprise could still be of great benefit in attracting visitors to Spilsby.

Bruce would like to further develop the historic appeal which the 19th Century former courthouse already holds with tourists by creating a show based on genuine events from Spilsby’s past.

The performance would begin in the town itself before moving to the theatre where a courtroom drama re-enactment ‘with artistic license’ would ensue.

Other aspirations intended to expand the theatre’s involvement in Spilsby’s community include the creation of an outdoor stage area which could host performances on market days.

Bruce also intends to work more with the town’s youngsters by expanding upon an under 11 youth club recently set up and would also like to develop more musical and comedy evenings.

Aesthetic and structural improvements to the theatre building remain a major goal for Bruce and Jane, who thanked Spilsby Town Council for its financial contribution towards the cost of replacing the theatre roof.

In the future Bruce would like to improve the carpark which he admitted is currently an ‘embarrassment’ and the front of building as well as replace seating to enable more diverse acts such as aerial performers to bring their shows to the theatre.

Councillors wished Bruce every success with his aspirations and thanked him for his presentation.

l What would you like from the theatre? email andrew.hirst@jpress.co.uk