Decision details

Grant to Arun Arts, Alexandra Theatre, Bognor Regis

Decision Maker: Economy Committee

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: No


This report is requesting that a grant of £15,000 per annum for two years (22/23 & 23/24 FY) is made to Arun Arts to support the continued provision of a community theatre serving Bognor Regis and the immediate region.


            Upon the invitation of the Chair, the Group Head of Economy introduced the report to the Committee. She highlighted the progress the Theatre had made in terms of sales and performances that they provided. They had continuously improved their offer over a number of years. The building was old and the maintenance was a struggle, however the grant which has come from the Levelling Up Fund should help to resolve those problems in the future. The financial sustainability of the Theatre was an ongoing challenge but moving into a positive situation, although the pandemic had had an impact. Arun Arts were crucial partners in the project.


Members (and non-Committee Members given permission to speak) then took part in a question and answer session as summarised below:

·         The Alexandra Theatre was a wonderful theatre, and the work that had been done over the last few years has really turned it around. Prior to Covid they were drawing in all kinds of performers and nationally recognised comics. The viability of the theatre was vital and it was very important the Theatre was supported.

·         The team at the Theatre did a great job, and it was a constant battle for them to survive. The grant was supported and could have gone further.

·         A replacement roof for the Theatre was important. It was noted that the Theatre would need to be closed for a significant period while the works, which were part of the Levelling Up Fund, were carried out. Whilst the grant was welcomed, clarity was sought on the timings of this. The Group Head of Economy confirmed that the Theatre would be worked with, and expectations were to keep the Theatre open for as much as possible.


During the question and answer session Councillor Stanley proposed an amendment to the recommendations which was to cover an additional £28,000 of urgent repairs. There was no Seconder for this amendment, and it was therefore not considered.


            The recommendations were Proposed by Councillor Andy Cooper and Seconded by Councillor Gunner.


            The Committee




That the provision of a grant of £15,000 per annum for two years to Arun Arts in 22/23 & 23/24 financial years be approved.


Report author: Denise Vine

Publication date: 08/02/2022

Date of decision: 19/01/2022

Decided at meeting: 19/01/2022 - Economy Committee

Accompanying Documents: