An Update from Esther Ferry-Kennington our Executive Director
When we closed our doors at the end of March 2020 we were very unsure that we would ever be able to open them again in the same way. We’re very pleased to say that over the next month or so we have some members of staff returning and we are making tentative plans to be able to open our doors.
As a theatre we are unlikely to be delivering any shows in the near future, even Christmas is uncertain at present, but anyone who is familiar with us knows that we are more than just a theatre. There are many community groups who rely on The Boo as a space to deliver their events; from our Community Café, to Apna Rossendale, to Cotton Shed and Footlights; who have all been wonderfully supportive of The Boo over that last two years.
During lockdown we have watched the world change in some drastic ways. We can’t wait to return to live theatre and music, when it’s safe to do so, but we also hope that some changes are here to stay. The highlighting of inequalities we face as a nation, through Black Lives Matter and associated activism, should be a conversation that continues long after lockdown. We want to continue to ensure that The Boo is a safe and welcome place for all the mixed communities of Rossendale, from the long-established to the newly arrived.
Our financial future looks reasonably secure for the present time. Arts Council England and other current funders have been incredibly supportive and we have received additional donations that will help us develop some new online content. This not only allows us to offer some programme during ongoing restrictions to live events, but also allows us to test how this helps develop our business model in a new ‘post-Covid’ world. We are also hoping to be able to programme cinema and some outdoor theatre in the not-too-distant future.
For now, it is just good to be able to tell you we are still here, and we are working our way towards a vision of the future for The Boo and for Rossendale.