Octagon gets £2 million funding - up to 2018

The Bolton News: Roddy Gauld Roddy Gauld

BOLTON’S Octagon Theatre is enjoying a double celebration after maintaining vital funding until 2018 - worth almost £2 million.

The news comes just days after four people connected to the theatre were honoured with a doctorate from the University of Bolton for their contribution to the arts.

The theatre secured the funding in the latest round of announcements by Arts Council England, the organisation which distributes government and National Lottery money.

It will receive £614,060 for 2015/16 and the same amount in both 2016/17 and 2017/18.

Theatre bosses say the cash will be used to pay for significant projects, details of which are to be announced later.

Octagon chief executive Roddy Gauld said: “The Octagon is delighted to receive continued support from the Arts Council during what was a difficult budget round.

“We have a number of important developments ahead.”

In 2014/15, the theatre received £616,553 from the Arts Council and £614,061 the previous year.

It was given another boost in recent days as the university held a ceremony to commemorate 190 years since its origins as Bolton Mechanics’ Institute.

David Thacker, the Octagon’s artistic director and professor of dramatic arts at the university, was honoured with a Doctor of Arts for Services to the Theatre.

His wife Margot Leicester, who went to Bury Grammar School, was honoured with a Doctor of Arts for Services to Theatre and Television.

The stage and screen actress has appeared in several productions at the Octagon, most recently in Long Day’s Journey Into Night and The Glass Menagerie.

Sue Hodgkiss CBE DL, principal patron of the Octagon, was also honoured with a Doctor of Arts for Services to Arts and the Community.

Margaret Blenkinsop, chairman of the Octagon Board, was honoured with a Doctor of Arts for her outstanding contribution to theatre and the community.

due to her long and distinguished career as a teacher, education adviser and leader.

A lifelong lover of the arts and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, she has supported the Octagon for many years.

The four were amongst 19 “outstanding individuals” honoured with a doctorate to celebrate every decade in the university’s 190-year history.

As the Octagon’s principal sponsor, the University of Bolton works closely with the theatre to allow students to learn about the staging of plays and other aspects of performance.

Mr Gauld added: “It's wonderful that so many people connected to the Octagon are being recognised by the university for their contribution to the theatre and the arts.”

Comments (4)

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8:10pm Mon 14 Jul 14

marco999 says...

Wonderful news, I'm thrilled. Well done to all concerned.
Wonderful news, I'm thrilled. Well done to all concerned. marco999
  • Score: 4

8:23pm Mon 14 Jul 14

atlas123 says...

Two million quid to keep the vast minority of luvvies happy...

This would clear one thirtyfifth of boltons pothole/road maintenance backlog, in turn benefitting a huge number of people!
Two million quid to keep the vast minority of luvvies happy... This would clear one thirtyfifth of boltons pothole/road maintenance backlog, in turn benefitting a huge number of people! atlas123
  • Score: -6

10:23pm Mon 14 Jul 14

questionairre says...

My goodness atlas123
Bolton is constantly being derided with the cloth cap and crap town image and you make a comment like that.

Good luck to the Octagon Theatre, and for a small amount of culture that this wonderful establishment brings to the town.
My goodness atlas123 Bolton is constantly being derided with the cloth cap and crap town image and you make a comment like that. Good luck to the Octagon Theatre, and for a small amount of culture that this wonderful establishment brings to the town. questionairre
  • Score: 4

11:00pm Mon 14 Jul 14

nigella farrage says...

atlas123 the money is coming from the Arts Council - which I primarily funded by The National Lottery.

If that money was diverted to the roads then it is FRAUD!!! You seem to have no sense of where the money comes from and why it is earmarked for certain project.

Lets put it this way it is primarily only the Octagon that is keeping the alternative night scene alive in the town - so unless you are a beer-swilling drunken lout the Octagon will do nothing for you. Octagon is award winning, brings stage actors to the town and creates money for the town as it is a local project worked by local people for the town, unlike the many chain bars on Bradshawgate which takes money away from the town!
atlas123 the money is coming from the Arts Council - which I primarily funded by The National Lottery. If that money was diverted to the roads then it is FRAUD!!! You seem to have no sense of where the money comes from and why it is earmarked for certain project. Lets put it this way it is primarily only the Octagon that is keeping the alternative night scene alive in the town - so unless you are a beer-swilling drunken lout the Octagon will do nothing for you. Octagon is award winning, brings stage actors to the town and creates money for the town as it is a local project worked by local people for the town, unlike the many chain bars on Bradshawgate which takes money away from the town! nigella farrage
  • Score: 2

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