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Coronavirus: Harrogate Theatre launches emergency appeal

Coronavirus: Harrogate Theatre launches emergency appeal

Published by May Norman at 12:08pm 18th March 2020.

Harrogate Theatre: Emergency Appeal

  • There are fears for the future of Harrogate Theatre as an emergency appeal's been launched.
  • It follows government advice for people to avoid theatres, pubs and restaurants.
  • Bosses from the theatre are now pleading for the public's support to ensure its survival post coronavirus. 

Harrogate Theatre's launched an emergency appeal in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak.

On Monday, Boris Johnson said “drastic action” is needed to tackle the fast spread of coronavirus across the UK and increased social distancing measures will be introduced.

He instructed the public to stop non-essential contact and to stop all non-essential travel - adding, they should also avoid pubs, clubs, theatres and other such social venues.

But that move is having a major impact on businesses - such as Harrogate Theatre.

Harrogate Theatre
Inside Harrogate Theatre

In a statement, Rachel Auty, from the theatre, expressed the immediate effects of the infection:

"As a charity with very little grant funding, we rely on a steady cash flow from year-round shows and we work to excruciatingly tight-knit budgets.

"As we now face unavoidable cancellations, we also face a very uncertain future.

"We know we are, by far, from the only organisation to work this way, and to now fear the worst - particularly within the arts."

Harrogate Theatre

Ms Auty continued:

"For 120 years we have brought significant money into our local economy and we have brought sustained joy to this town - to our communities.

"We’ve also brought huge names to Harrogate and we’ve drawn visitors from far and wide.

"We’ve inspired thousands of local young people, and we’ve helped hundreds of brilliant creative people to realise their own ambition in making and mobilising new work.

And now we’re levelling with you – we have never needed your support more than we do today."

Harrogate Theatre Panto win online
The panto at Harrogate Theatre

Ms Auty concluded:

"None of us are entirely sure what the next few weeks and months hold, but the one thing we know is that when all the dust has settled, we want to still be here to bring that joy that everyone will so desperately need.

Please – if you are able – consider supporting us today. We want to keep bringing the joy for generations to come."

The theatre has issued five ways people can help:

  1. Make a donation

You can do this online via this website, or call 01423 502116 between 10am – 5pm Mon-Fri

     2. Buy tickets to our autumn/ winter shows

You can see what’s coming up and book online

We have our third season of HT Rep in September, the 12th annual Harrogate Comedy Festival in October, and our award-winning pantomime is Cinderella for 2020.

     3. Join our membership scheme

From just £30 you can join our exclusive pre-sales club and enjoy a range of other lovely perks.

     4. If we have to cancel or rearrange shows, please consider donating your ticket fee (or part of it)

The notification email you will receive will make it easy for you to choose which option you would like to take.

     5. Help us spread the word about our emergency appeal

We urge you to continue supporting other cultural activities and spending with our other local businesses as much as you can.

For more information, please visit the Harrogate Theatre website.