Save Streatham Hill Theatre
The bid to save the magnificent Streatham Hill Theatre for the community has taken a step forward with the start of a crowdfunding campaign by The Friends of Streatham Hill Theatre. The theatre was granted a Grade 2 listing in 1994 as “an unusually lavish example of a theatre built in the short-lived revival of building in 1929-30” Historic England. It is near the top of the Theatres’ Trust Theatres at Risk list.
In 2018, Lambeth Council approved The Friends’ nomination of Streatham Hill Theatre as an Asset of Community Value (ACV), which was then appealed by the owners. After a flashmob demonstration of support by over 1000 people in November 2018, ACV status was confirmed in early 2019.
The scheme to create a vital hub for the community has gathered momentum since Streatham was shaken by the recent terror attack. Friends’ Chairman, David Harvey, says “There is no local creative hub on the scale that could be created by reawakening this amazing empty theatre – it’s the only building left in Streatham large enough for the community to come together. The Theatres’ Trust has given Streatham Hill Theatre its highest ranking for community value and potential use for performance.
The Friends of Streatham Hill Theatre propose a multi-use arts and cultural centre by re-opening the auditorium, bringing back live performance, and activating ancillary spaces to create a vibrant and sustainable venue supporting a creative community.
The first step is to fund a viability study developing proposals and options. It will include revenue, modelling, and restoration and reopening costs.
If enough support for the crowdfund can be demonstrated, the Friends could attract a contribution from the Mayor of London’s Crowdfund 2020 scheme. The campaign already has the backing of leading theatre figures, such as Streatham-born Simon Callow and local resident, Catherine Russell, who commented, “The auditorium is stunning… It would be absolutely fantastic if the whole building could be used - and used for the community and live theatre; it would help the whole area."
Lambeth Council’s Investment and Growth Strategy for Streatham commits the council to “exploring opportunities for Streatham Hill Theatre, with an opportunity analysis and appraisal to explore the feasibility of refurbishing and rejuvenating Streatham Hill Theatre.”
Please pledge your support at save.streathamhilltheatre.org. The Spacehive crowdfunding page is at save.streathamhilltheatre.org