British pubs and theatres ‘saved’ by £25m rescue package, Government says

The Wolverhampton Grand Theatre is among 70 buildings that will benefit from the fund.
A number of theatres will benefit (Ian West/PA)
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Joseph Draper2 minutes ago

Struggling theatres, pubs, parks, and cinemas across the country have been “saved” by a £25 million rescue package, the Government has said.

Successful bidders will be given a share of the Community Ownership Fund – a pot to support spaces important to local communities.

More than 70 treasured buildings across the UK will be rescued from closure, the Government said, including three historic theatres.

Just over £2 million will go to the Wolverhampton Grand Theatre so it can buy a neighbouring 1800s building and turn it into an adjoining venue. This will allow the 129-year-old theatre more space to host creative and performing arts activities.

Another £2 million will help secure the long-term future of the King’s Theatre in Edinburgh, one of Scotland’s most important theatres, while over £1 million will restore the Jacobs Wells Baths building in Bristol.

The latest round of the Community Ownership Fund will also be supporting 26 community centres and village halls, eight pubs, and 12 leisure centres.

These are unique and cherished places, valued by local people of all ages, and we know how much they mean to communities

Michael Gove

It comes as the Department for Culture, Media and Sport announced 5,000 religious buildings in the United Kingdom will receive a share of up to £42 million in public funding, including Salford Cathedral, which has received more than £452,000 for a series of works to protect the 19th-century building.

Commenting on the funding for community spaces, Levelling Up secretary Michael Gove said: “Investing in communities improves lives – whether that’s rebuilding a community centre, rescuing historic pubs and theatres or upgrading sports facilities used by families every day.

“These are unique and cherished places, valued by local people of all ages, and we know how much they mean to communities.

“The Community Ownership Fund is about restoring pride in the places people call home and I’m delighted to be funding these projects.”