Despite huge public objection Nottinghamshire County Council intends to recommend a 100% funding cut to us at its Full Council meeting this Thursday (27 February). The decision has been taken despite the cut being the third most objected to proposal which saw almost 38,500 responses. A cut of 100% amounts to £94,500 to the Playhouse and would signal the end of a relationship that has existed for decades.
At 10am, before the Full Council meeting commences on Thursday, Playhouse staff will be outside County Hall and will be asking Nottinghamshire County Council, in light of the consultation results, to think again about removing their support from the Playhouse completely. Staff will also be supporting the ongoing My Theatre Matters campaign to support local theatres up and down the country. We would love for you to join us.
In a statement issued yesterday Councillor Alan Rhodes, Leader of Nottinghamshire County Council, defended their decision not to amend their proposal despite the overwhelming public response to reconsider:
“We recognise that while Nottingham Playhouse is based in the city it does deliver initiatives within the county. However, none of the other theatres which do fall into the County Council’s area receive any grant support from us.”
Both Nottingham Playhouse Chief Executive, Stephanie Sirr and Artistic Director, Giles Croft have expressed disappointment that Nottinghamshire County Council have chosen to ignore supporters of the Playhouse by making no concession to their original proposal.
In addition to the official response, a staggering 7,624 people signed an independent change.org petition to express their opposition to the 100% cut.
If approved, the cut would come at the end of another year when we have met all the criteria set down by Nottinghamshire County Council in the funding agreement to which the Council previously committed for the period until April 2015.