The Community Centre Committee are delighted to announce the completion of the major renovations to the stage. All the curtains have been replaced and the lighting modernised, giving a performance area that should be an asset to the Centre for decades to come. The work was completed by Taylor Stage Services of Ashton-in-Makerfield.
Vice-Chair Sue Hardacre said "We had started talking to Taylors in January and by mid-March had decided that the work would go ahead. The lockdown, when it finally arrived, took the momentum out of so many things and everything paused while we all adjusted to the new situation. When the company contacted us to say that they were working, we decided to take advantage of the empty building to allow for the work to go ahead. We are pleased that we did so and are delighted with the result."
While the front curtain had worn quite well over the years, the black stage curtains were dull, stained and in a couple of places, badly torn. These have been replaced by a dense, black wool serge and now all curtains hang from new and smooth tracks. All the structural work has been strengthened and tested and new lighting, both above the stage and in the wings, has been added that is practical, cost-effective and easy too access. The ceiling tiles have been mended and repainted so now the stage is equipped to create the 'black box' effect that provides a framework for all kinds of performances. The colour of the front curtain has been chosen to reflect the colour of the new burgundy chairs which, when finances allow, will replace the grey ones for the Hall.
Thanks to the enthusiastic support from the community and the many groups that use it, the Community Centre entered the lockdown in a very secure financial position. However, there is now no income being generated and the future for public venues is still very uncertain. Sue says "Each week as I remove all activities from the calendar I am reminded of how busy we used to be, how varied our users were and how buoyant our income stream was. We are confident that we will return to those days eventually but till then we shall manage our resources carefully and prudently so that, when we open again, the community will have a Centre to be proud off"