The Stamford Shakespeare Company (SSC), with its open-air theatre at Tolethorpe Hall, is staging a series of fundraising events as part of an urgent campaign to save the theatre, including a car boot sale this weekend.
This popular attraction usually sees thousands of people enjoy the shows performed on an outdoor stage with the audience undercover under a huge canopy. Well known for its Shakespeare productions it’s also staged other performances including Wind in the Willows and Dad’s Army.
The #SaveYourTheatre campaign aims to raise crucial funds to keep the theatre company afloat and to ensure the summer season of plays can continue next year.
The impact of Covid-19 on SSC has been enormous. The Theatre and Hall were closed in March this year and the Company has lost a forecasted £240,000 worth of ticket sales. As a charity who receive no funding from any arts organisations or formal sponsorship, SSC relies on income from tickets sales to fund the productions, maintain the beautiful grounds and upkeep the Grade 2* listed Elizabethan Hall. The future of SSC is now at great risk.
Although the government lifted some of the restrictions on theatres, allowing outdoor venues to re-open with social distancing in place, they haven’t been able to rehearse, haven’t finished the construction of their sets, or the costumes for their actors and therefore productions could not proceed.
Caroline Stephenson, Chair of SSC Board of Directors, said:
“We are all so lucky to have this theatre on our doorstep. To date, we have welcomed over a million audience members, to share experiences with friends and family through theatre, giving volunteers a place to be valued, and inspiring young people to dream big.
“Losing this wonderful, unique and special place would leave a void in our community. We have been putting on Shakespeare plays for over 50 years and we are determined that Covid-19 will not put an end to this, but without the help from the community, we will not survive.
“We are enormously grateful to our patrons and overwhelmed by their continued generosity and kindness. We now need you more than ever.”
A car boot sale is being held in the car park at Tolethorpe Hall on Sunday September 27 from 10am – 3pm but ifyou would like to support the campaign you can also donate:
Just Giving – https://www.justgiving.com/campaign/SSCsaveyourtheatre
Cheque, made payable to Stamford Shakespeare Company
Cash sent in a secure envelope to us at:
Stamford Shakespeare Company, Tolethorpe Hall
Little Casterton, Stamford, PE9 4BH
For more information, please take a look at their fundraising website: