Gallery: Behind the scenes at Lowestoft’s refurbished Marina Theatre

From the outside, Lowestoft's Marina Theatre appears to be enjoying a quiet summer holiday as it takes its seasonal break from hosting live shows. But behind its smart facade, the Edwardian theatre is a hive of activity as a �250,000 refurbishment nears completion.

Over the past three weeks, teams of contractors, staff and volunteers from the Friends of the Marina have been working around the clock to strip out the Edwardian theatre in preparation for its first major investment in 25 years.

The refurbishment work, which is due to finish next month, will see new seats installed, new carpets laid, the auditorium repainted and the introduction of a digital 3D cinema.

And the first people to enjoy the new-look theatre will be those who have booked tickets to see the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra's concert on Friday, September 14.

The first task was to strip out technical equipment, remove the theatre's 750 seats and thousands of old carpet tiles, take away obsolete signs and hide electrical cables.

The scaffolding has allowed decorators to prepare walls for the refurbishment.

During the preparation, contractors revealed splendid art deco and Edwardian features which had been hidden under layers of green paint. The next stage of the project involves the auditorium being repainted.

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Marina Theatre Trust chief executive Martin Halliday, said: 'Work is progressing well and on schedule with the painting contractors working around the clock.

'Each day we are seeing more and more of the previously drab interior come to life and I am certain the public will be thrilled to see the result of all the hard work when the theatre reopens in September.'

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