Hazel Clover joined the council’s senior management team on 29 June on an interim contract basis to re-open The Castle theatre. She has been overwhelmed by the offers of help from the local community, potential employees and ex-employees of The Castle. It is taking her some time to wade through all of the emails she has received, and has said “I would like to thank everyone who has contacted me; I am so impressed by the enthusiasm and commitment . demonstrated by so many people. I would just ask that everyone bears with me; I have received many, many offers of help and I will be in touch as soon as I can”. Her focus at present is putting a programme together for the immediate future, for when the doors are open again, and this – together with recruiting a temporary team to operate the venue – is her main priority.
Hazel is happy to receive further contacts from anyone interested in putting on performances or assisting in any way; because she is working part-time with the council and is busy with meetings and discussions she has asked that contact is by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. This mailbox is monitored daily.
As well as making sure there is a programme in place the council is checking that the building is safe and is compliant with health and safety requirements. Our contractors are currently working through a 50 point checklist, and almost all need some work, with 15 that must be addressed before the building can re-open.
The council is planning to run The Castle itself for a short while so that councillors can consider in the autumn how it can be managed in the future on a financially sustainable basis. It is pleased that Franks have asked to continue to run the restaurant and bar, both of which remain open.