The­atre faces race against time to drum up vi­tal fund­ing

Macclesfield Express - - CHARITY ROUND-UP -

ONE of Mac­cles­field’s best-loved the­atres faces clo­sure if it can’t drum up vi­tal funds to en­sure its sur­vival.

Clon­ter Opera the­atre is in jeop­ardy due to fund­ing prob­lems, with enough money avail­able only to keep it go­ing un­til the end of March next year

The multi-plat­form arts venue, which was founded 40 years ago, is cur­rently funded by spon­sor­ship, do­na­tions, grants and ticket sales.

But after cuts, it now faces a des­per­ate race against time to raise £150,000 so that it can keep run­ning through­out 2015.

Is­abella Lock­ett, Clon­ter’s mar­ket­ing man­ager and the daugh­ter of the the­atre’s founder, Jef­frey Lock­ett,

. said: “In spite of more than 1,000 new­com­ers vis­it­ing the venue this year and host­ing our most di­verse pro­gramme to date, this has not been enough to re­plen­ish our dwin­dling fi­nan­cial re­serves.

“We have six months to turn this around and we can do it.

“We need to get this money as quickly a pos­si­ble to make sure that we can con­tinue. £60,000 will keep the the­atre open for the whole year in 2015, but £150,000 will en­sure that we have a full pro­gramme of events.”

After in­aus­pi­cious ori­gins as a barn at Swet­ten­ham Heath con­verted for a night to host an opera con­cert, in the last four decades Clon­ter has be­come a re­source that hosts a num­ber of com­mu­nity events.

Is­abella said: “We are call­ing upon any phi­lan­thropists or lo­cal firms out there who would like to do­nate, and to ex­ist­ing sup­port­ers to ‘spread the word’.

“We still have the ca­pac­ity to raise an ex­tra £50,000 from ticket sales alone if we can fill the the­atre for all re­main­ing events. It is not too late to save this ‘hid­den gem’.”

If you’d like to do­nate or get in­volved, email de­vel­op­metnt@ clon­ter­opera.com or call the box of­fice on 01260 224 514.

» Clon­ter Opera founder Jef­fery Lock­ett ● at the udi­to­rium in 1984 a

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