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Stars help Marine Theatre to Raise the Roof
CELEBRITIES are joining the Marine Theatre’s Raise the Roof fundraising campaign to help save the historic building from closure.
Big names performing on stage, including Lucy Porter and Billy Geraghty, are recording a short piece for a video plea, which will soon go on YouTube as part of a social media push to raise more money.
The theatre, which is 120 years old, needs to raise £95,000 within three years to replace the roof after it was found to have a leak which lets in huge amounts of water.
It is so serious that artistic director Tim Bell said if the money is not raised in time, the theatre will be forced to shut.
Mr Bell said: “We have to raise the money, it is that simple. This theatre is well loved in the town and provides something for everyone, but the roof is in such a bad state we have to raise the money or we will have to shut.
“We realise it is a huge amount and we also know a lot of the money will have to come from grants from the National Lottery or the Theatre Trust, but we need to raise as much as we can.
“We are now constantly applying for grants and if we get rejected, we will apply for more.”
The problem is now so bad parts of the ceiling in the main room are now missing and in bad weather, members of staff have to place two paddling pools on the floor to collect the water.
Because of the building’s age and building techniques at the time, workers cannot locate the problem or where the leak is without taking the whole roof off and replacing it.
Mr Bell said: “We don’t just want to do a patch up job on it. We want to be able to repair it so the building will still be here for another 120 years. We started the Raise the Roof campaign in May and have raised £3,400 already so it’s a good start but we have to keep going.”
Mr Bell also said he was grateful to Lyme Regis Town Council for the money they give the theatre to help meet the running costs on a day to day basis.
Mr Bell added: “Without the town council, we would not exist. We do get a bit of criticism for the money the council gives us and we don’t want to keep going back to the council asking for money. We want to do it ourselves and hopefully the push on social media and the video will help us.”
To keep up with the campaign follow @marinetheatre on Twitter, or ‘like’ their page on Facebook.
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