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Cash pays for stage renovations

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The show will go on for thespians thanks to a cash donation from a local retailer to help pay for stage equipment.

Central England Co–operative, which has a store in Market Street, Bakewell, donated £5,000 to the Bakewell Town and Community Trust to carry out work on the stage in the Assembly Hall in Bakewell Town Hall.

Patricia Lunn, chairman of Bakewell Town and Community Trust, said: “Thanks to the donation from Central England Co–operative we will now be able to replace the stage extension and install wing and stage curtains thus ensuring that the facility meets the needs of the Bakewell community.”

The trust, which is a registered charity, took over the running of the hall in 2009, at which point it began a programme of improvements including works on the proscenium arched stage.

The hall itself has now been restored, but the stage needed a number of improvements to make it fit for purpose.

The charity’s board of directors therefore approached local businesses, as well as the Co–operative, for financial support.

Patricia added: “The trust is keen to develop new audiences and participants in arts activities and is currently undertaking an initiative to encourage local organisations to use the facilities for creative workshops, rehearsals and performances.

“Since taking over the building, a new drama group has been established which has resulted in the successful reintroduction of a pantomime being staged in the main hall after many years absent.

“The trust has also recently taken part in the ‘Big Gig’ a national initiative which has introduced people of all ages to musical instruments and has led to some joining local groups.”

Central England Co-operative donated the money from its Making a Difference Community Dividend fund, which guarantees that a percentage of its trading profit is donated to local groups in its trading area.

Joy Welch, of Central England Co–operative, said: “This is a very worthwhile arts’ project which will prove invaluable to the people of Bakewell.

“As a community retailer Central England Co-operative is very proud to support this initiative.”

For further information on Bakewell Town Hall, including what’s on, visit the website www.btct.co.uk

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