Double boost for rural arts

IAN CLARKE Efforts to promote music, drama and cinema in rural Norfolk have received a double boost.Breckland Council has agreed to give £30,000 towards the refurbishment of the Theatre Royal in Norwich in return for £60,000 worth of rural outreach work by the theatre.

IAN CLARKE

Efforts to promote music, drama and cinema in rural Norfolk have received a double boost.

Breckland Council has agreed to give £30,000 towards the refurbishment of the Theatre Royal in Norwich in return for £60,000 worth of rural outreach work by the theatre.

Claire Salley, Breckland Council's arts development officer, said the scheme would benefit hundreds of people across the district from young people and teaching professionals through to parents and families.

She said: "It will bring the theatre to rural parishes in a way that might not otherwise be possible."

The initial partnership will last for two seasons but it is hoped it could help encourage vibrant theatre for many years to come.

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The Theatre Royal sells 20,000 tickets to Breckland residents each year.

Meanwhile, Breckland Council has announced the latest events in the Creative Arts East Village Stage and Village Screen schemes, which aim to promote high-quality musical, dance and drama performances and professional-quality cinema to rural areas.

On Common Ground - which involves stories, music, poetry and song from Chris Wood and Hugh Lupton - is being staged at Whissonsett Village Hall on Thursday.

Village Screen continues its season at Wells Cole Community Centre, Saham Toney, on Saturday February 10 with a showing of The White Countess, starring Ralph Fiennes and Natasha Richardson.

Breckland Cabinet member Lady Kay Fisher said: "So many villages have lost their post offices, school and pubs but by having village events we can help draw people together again which is why we put funding into schemes like this."

More information is available on 01362 656367 or by e-mailing claire.salley@breckland.gov.uk