Wellingborough councillors last night agreed to a period of negotiation with The Castle (Wellingborough) Ltd in a bid to ensure the continued operation of the Arts Centre.
At a meeting of the full council, members agreed that the authority should work with the company to explore ways to strengthen the leadership and management of the company. Members of the council's resources committee had previously recommended that a new company be set up to run the theatre, as a legally-required tender process had failed to identify any suitable bidders for the contract.
Terry Wright, Corporate Director at Wellingborough Council explains more: "Following discussions with The Castle (Wellingborough) Ltd, we have come to an agreement that allows us to explore ways that we can continue to work together. We are working together to explore how the leadership and management of the company can be enhanced. If we can achieve this we feel that this would be the best solution for all concerned - employees, volunteers, performers, sponsors, suppliers and, most importantly, the audience.
"We are starting immediate discussions with the company board and aim to have new management and leadership arrangements in place by 1 February.
"The Castle Arts Centre is a hugely valued facility and it provides a varied programme for events for local people. We want to ensure that this continues, and that it also provides the best possible value for money for local taxpayers. We hope to do this by entering into these new negotiations."