Introducing the Lancaster Grand’s New Foyer
The Proposed New Foyer
Lancaster Grand is very compact considering its 460 seat capacity. It has an extremely small foyer and bar and being 237 years old, it was not designed with disabled access in mind. Following the decision by Lancaster City Council to redevelop the area around the theatre, it was decided that now was the time to build a new foyer to provide additional space. The original “glass box” ideas have been progressively developed and led to the current stunning design. The computer generated image shows what it will look like.
The foyer will benefit theatre goers, the community and the long term future of the theatre by:
- increasing circulation space
- greatly improving disabled access using a wheelchair platform lift
- providing additional space to allow the theatre to host conferences and seminars
- creating a space for studio productions, small community groups and by schools as a teaching area
- providing accessible coffee and alcohol bars at street level.
- providing additional income to help to ensure the theatre’s continued operation for generations to come
The theatre is owned under a Trust arrangement by Lancaster Footlights, a registered charity (number 509425). It operates around break-even year on year without the benefit of any external funding and has to generate all its own income. Looking into the future, the additional income streams made possible by the new foyer will provide additional finance which will help to ensure the long term viability of this gem of a theatre.
To date, the theatre has raised £½ million helped by the donation of a generous legacy by Tony Yates who was an avid supporter of the Grand Theatre. This provided a major boost towards the £2 million needed to build the foyer. The design was given planning approval on 7th January 2019 . Fund raising has been put on a temporary hold pending transfer of the Council owned part of the theatre car park. As soon as this has taken place, there will be a major fund raising campaign starting with the aim of raising the additional £1 1/2 million by 2021 when construction work is planned to begin.