AS a regular patron of the Worthing theatres, I cannot imagine the thought process behind any of the possible decisions to close them.
Why close the Connaught and keep the Pavilion or is it because of the pier? The Pavilion is an over-sized community hall with cheap seats, dusty décor and a typical end of the pier atmosphere.
The Connaught is a different matter, steeped in theatrical history, still neglected inside but an extremely good theatre.
Why is the council responsible for the running of theatres, anyway? If they are not making money, as is claimed, then they should not be closed, but sold as a going concern or let a company, or at least a new trust, take over the running.
If it’s council owned and council run, what enthusiasm does any of the staff have to make it a success?
Is it because the percentage taken from the touring companies is not enough?
The productions that come into the Connaught have exceptional sets at times and the theatre is well-attended, so something fundamental must be at fault. Where are the schools productions, where are the amateur dramatic productions? The musical society put on some amazing productions, but do they find it expensive to hire the theatre? The pantomime is a sell-out I understand, so where on earth is the theatre “losing money”.
It’s the people of Worthing who patronise the theatre who are let down by what would appear to be a “couldn’t care less attitude”. Don’t close the theatres, sell them but let them remain open.