South Coast theatre to become first fully sustainable green theatre in Europe.
Award winning Titchfield Festival Theatre based in St Margarets Lane Titchfield nr Fareham are to become the first fully sustainable ‘green’ theatre in Europe. After a series of funding initiatives the company have managed to raise £500,000 which will cover a large part of the works required. Most of this is in loan monies with little or no grant funding.
Titchfield Festival Theatre is the most prolific producing amateur theatre in the country and operates from 3 sites. Their main 200 seat theatre in leafy St Margarets Lane on the edge of Titchfield village is housed in a 1960’s warehouse. It has a leaky roof, no heating and costs a fortune to run. The ‘green’ refurbishment will see a 200kw bio mass boiler, supplied by Harvest Renewables; provide heat through a central heating system installed by local company IDC. Patrons will now no longer have to have blankets to keep warm during productions and actors will not have to watch their breath freeze as they speak. This first phase will be followed closely in January 2016 by phase 2, with a new insulated roof replacing the leaky cement based roof. This will have a 92kw solar panel installation placed on it. The solar panels, some of which are aero voltaic panels, will supply electricity which will more than cover the theatre’s needs and will generate a small income. The state of the art, aero voltaic technology uses the heat generated from under the panels to enter the building and will keep the wardrobe and props area at a constant ambient temperature. Phase 2 will also see a large horseshow mezzanine installed round the current seating block. This new area will allow the main house to be walled off and new, and much needed community and rehearsal space to be created. All the walls will be sound proofed and insulated. Phase 3 planned for later in 2016 will see a waste water and rainwater harvesting system installed and much needed disability access built in. The total refurbishment will cost in excess of £700,000 and will eventually mean Titchfield will have a zero carbon rated theatre.
Theatre Director Kevin Fraser commented. ‘’ This is a major move forward for Titchfield and the South Coast and has taken over 18 months to plan and put into place. It is sad that most of the work is being completed using finance raised through loan funding and grant funding bodies such as the Ashden Trust, the Arts Council and Fareham Borough Council who all talk the talk when it comes to sustainable initiatives cannot seem to release any grant funding to help us. Talk is easy, actions speak much louder than words and through our own initiative Titchfield will have a theatre to take us into the 2020’s which they can be proud of.’’
For more information contact Kevin Fraser on 07830 285571/01329 556156
Website info http://titchfieldfestivaltheatre.org/green/