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Arts Council confirms £5m funding for Shakespeare North

Arts Council England has confirmed £5m of HM Treasury funding will be given to the Shakespeare North Playhouse to be built in Prescot town centre.

The money was pledged by then Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne as part of the budget announcement in May 2016. Since then, Knowsley Council and Shakespeare North Trust have presented a business plan to Arts Council England to endorse the funding.

Plans to build a £26m Shakespeare North Playhouse and education centre in Prescot were approved by Knowsley in April 2016.

The Government money will be used towards creating a 330-seat Jacobean court style theatre and study centre, education and community resources and exhibition area, the supporting administrative offices and catering and hospitality facilities.

In November, Helm Architecture was appointed as lead architect for the scheme, with Austin-Smith: Lord as supporting architect. Mott MacDonald is to provide structural engineering services. AECOM will provide M&E engineering and cost consultancy services and has also been appointed as acoustics consultant.

John Flaherty, executive director of place at Knowsley Council, said: “This is a fantastic achievement and a key milestone for Shakespeare North Trust and Knowsley Council. Not only does it mean we now have £11m of confirmed funding, but it is also a huge seal of approval and vote of confidence from the Arts Council that the Shakespeare theatre and education centre is a viable and sustainable business.

“It will also strengthen the outline business case submission to the Combined Authority Single Investment Fund to secure a further £6.5m funding towards the development.”

Subject to funding, construction of the new playhouse is expected to start January 2018.

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Please, please, KMBC don’t end up calling this ‘Shakespeare North, Knowsley’.. Be not afraid of greatness. It is Shakespeare North, Liverpool.

By LEighteen

Just call it Shakespeare North.Or we will have a repeat of Mediacity,which will now forever be BBC Salford.

By Elephant

Shakespeare, East Knowsley to be correct!

By Man on bicycle

Elephant, Would you say the same if it was in the “M” zone?

By Seat by the Window

It should be Shakespeare Knowsley.

Knowseley is NOT Liverpool.

By Daz

I would call Mediacity BBC North. BBC Salford and Shakespeare North, Knowsley, are tokenistic titles. Plus the second one,sounds like it is in the North of Knowsley. Knowsley is not even a real place.It was created out of old West Lancashire boroughs,when the boundaries were changed in the 70s. If anything, Shakespeare North Prescot, sounds better,but then Southerners would probably think it was named after ‘ Two Jags.’

By Elephant

Of course Knowsley is Liverpool, Daz

By Peter Stoba

Daz: re: ‘Knowsley’ – “The Moon’s an arrant thief, And her pale fire she snatches from the Sun”…

By LEighteen