The Brewhouse Theatre will re-open in the New Year. Taunton Theatre Association , a voluntary not-for-profit community arts organisation, will run the theatre on a five-year lease from Taunton council.
TTA , an amalgam of Tone Theatre, Taunton Association for the Performing Arts and the Count Me In community group, has taken on the task of managing the 352-seat theatre which costs a minimum of £350,000 a year to run. It was the only organisation bidding to run the Brewhouse.
Val Hammond, from TTA, said the news was “absolutely great. I’m also slightly daunted. Now we’ve really got a mountain to climb because there is a lot to do – but it will be very exciting work.”
In a statement, TTA said: “The fine details of the agreement are to be negotiated but planning begins immediately to bring the theatre back to life on a permanent basis. The anticipated opening of the doors is April 2014.”
“TTA thanks all those organisations and individuals who have supported them over the past nine months, making this truly a community venture. We are especially pleased that a number of performers and performing companies have been in touch to say they want to return to the Brewhouse.”
In its application TTA said 400 people had registered an interest in volunteering and it would employ ten to 12 people in a variety of roles, from a chief executive to café staff.
Cllr Norman Cavill, who holds the economic development and the arts portfolio, said “The Brewhouse is vitally important to Taunton in ensuring we have a thriving arts and cultural scene for our community, visitors and for those who may be thinking of relocating to Taunton.
“A successful theatre also makes a very important contribution to our local businesses improving the offer that Taunton has for that all important night time economy.
TTA will be in action on December 19, 20 & 21 for promenade performances of a specially written version of ‘Hansel and Gretel’ on Castle Green. Tickets were free but ‘sold out’ in 27 minutes!