We are amazed at the resilience of people and our communities.

As we continue to track the current situation, many of those I’ve spoken to have found this last week one of the hardest. We are now deep into the lockdown and closure period, and yet as of today none of us have any definite answers.

I’m sending you my best wishes if your own feelings mirror these. – keep going. There’s no doubt we face on going challenges – and perhaps some of our biggest yet as individuals, organisations and as a town – but the strength I’ve seen already in our ability respond, react and adapt gives me hope. I have already been amazed at the resilience of people and our communities.

It will come as no surprise that our ticket sales have slowed right down and our Emergency Appeal is now creaking along. We missed our fundraising target last week by £1600, which naturally causes concern as another week passes where we all bear the weight of this burden. As the uncertainty continues this has a direct impact on our ability to fundraise and secure our future.

Rest assured at Harrogate Theatre we are continuing to explore all avenues to survival. We are cost saving in every possible area we can, and we are applying for every pot of money available to us. We are also welcoming with open arms the trickle of ticket sales and donations that continue to help sustain us as we aim to take things day by day and keep positive.

We now all await further news from the UK government this weekend. Once we have some more structured guidance we can set to work planning our own timelines to safely try to get back on our feet. I will update you on that as soon as I am able. 

I’d like to finish by saying thank you. Since we launched our Emergency Appeal at the end of March we have now reached over £32,000 of support. This is phenomenal. In particular our higher-tier White Rose Membership and our Sponsor a Seat scheme are proving popular options. Just one or two of these sales makes a huge difference to our £4,000 a week fundraising efforts, and we look forward to delivering all of those associated benefits and more when our doors re-open. While we can’t quite yet say when, at some point in the not too distant future there will be one almighty party.

Until then, stay safe.

First published in the Harrogate Advertiser THU 7 MAY.