Green light for Perth Theatre’s £16m restoration
Work to redevelop Perth’s 115-year old theatre could begin as early as next week after Perth & Kinross Council granted planning and listed building consent.
The council’s development management committee yesterday formally approved the £16.6 million project which will see the B-listed Edwardian auditorium restored to its former glory and a new 200-seater studio theatre created at the venue when it reopens at the end of 2017.
The newly transformed venue will have increased workshop spaces for creative learning and community projects including the thriving Perth Youth Theatre, which celebrates its 50th anniversary in 2016, and there will be improved access and facilities for audiences and visitors.
Gwilym Gibbons, chief executive of Horsecross Arts, the creative organisation behind the project, said: “We are delighted at this major leap forward on the path to transform Perth Theatre. Now that the plans have been approved, the project will move forward in earnest. Such was the interest in our Open Sessions in April 2015, we are delighted to invite the public along to meet us once again due to popular demand. The restored and redeveloped Perth Theatre will be at the heart of the community and the cultural map of Scotland for many generations to come and it is important that the local community get the opportunity to have their say and play their part.”
Horsecross Arts has been pledged £15.1m for the Perth Theatre redevelopment from project partners Perth & Kinross Council, Creative Scotland, The Gannochy Trust, the Heritage Lottery Fund, trusts and foundations, generous individuals and other supporters or funding bodies. Horsecross is seeking to raise an additional £1.5m to ensure that the newly transformed venue is fully equipped and furnished for a new century of theatre in Perth.