‘Substantial savings’ from new business plan for Worthing theatres

READERS have reacted to our front page story about the daily cost to tax-payers of Worthing’s theatres.

The Herald revealed since Worthing Borough Council opted to keep control of the theatres in November, last year, the venues have cost tax-payers £3,000 per day – a total cost so far of £300,000.

Senior reporter Sarah Dale, who wrote the story, received more than 40 tweets from people in response to the story.

Laura Scott, a volunteer for West Durrington Phoenix Youth group, tweeted: “£3,000 a day?! There are parks in desperate need of repair, our youth group works out of a Portacabin, thousands of pounds we could have spent on a new minibus.”

Paul Yallop, leader of the council, said he wanted to assure residents a business plan, currently being drawn up for the theatres, would offer “substantial savings”.

He said: “The theatres working group are putting a lot of time into the plan which will be considered at the next joint scrutiny committee meeting. My officers assure me the plan will demonstrate how we can make a 25 per cent saving on the cost.”

The council has already served notice on the company which provides catering, believing bringing catering in-house would make savings.

Mr Yallop said other ways of reducing costs include smarter programming, better deals with producers and working alongside regional theatres.

He said hiring out the Assembly Hall could be another money-saving measure.

The business plan will be considered on March 27.