Rain

Rain

max temp: 9°C

min temp: 5°C

ESTD 1874 Search

Felixstowe: Spa Pavilion revival moves a step closer

14:35 25 July 2014

The Spa Pavilion at Felixstowe

The Spa Pavilion at Felixstowe

Archant

A seafront theatre looks set to be given a new lease of life after the proposed new owner confirmed their intention to relaunch the venue.

shares

Suffolk Coastal District Council has announced that its search to find a new owner for Felixstowe’s Spa Pavilion remains on track, following news earlier this year that it had selected a preferred bidder to revive the theatre.

In May, the Council revealed that, following an extensive marketing campaign, it had selected a preferred bidder to possibly take over the premises, with plans to relaunch the venue following its closure in January 2013.

The plan was to finalise a business case with the unnamed bidder over three months, in the hope of securing the future of the venue, which was forced to close after the council agreed it could no longer afford to funding and was having to subsidise ticket sales after audience attendance fell.

The theatre, which had been managed on the council’s behalf by Openwide International since 2006, faced possible demolition if a buyer was not found.

With the three-month business case period due to expire at the end of this month, Suffolk Coastal has confirmed that the intention of the bidder is to “re-energise and relaunch” the Spa Pavilion as a theatre venue, along with a refurbished restaurant and other services.

Suffolk Coastal’s planning boss, Geoff Holdcroft said: “Although nothing has been agreed, our negotiations with the preferred bidder remain on track. The work we have done with them, to date, has been very positive and promising.

“We are now at the stage where we intend to continue to work with the preferred bidder, in confidence, to enter into detailed negotiations and to develop a binding legal contract.

“This is definitely a very positive step forward and I am optimistic that the Spa Pavilion can be reopened. Hopefully, we can now work with the preferred bidder to find a way forward to retain a revitalised Spa Pavilion, in the heart of Felixstowe.”

Suffolk Coastal is not revealing the identity of the preferred bidder at this stage, as no contract has been signed.

If an agreement is reached, a legal contract relating to the future of the venue is expected to be completed by November 2014, to allow for completion of some improvement works ahead of a possible spring 2015 reopening.

The council is now entering detailed negotiations, which are likely to last some months.

Graham Newman, mayor of Felixstowe, said: “The people of Felixstowe want to see something happen to the venue, particularly if it means restoring the auditorium for stage performances, so anything that indicates a move in that direction is encouraging.

“From my [Suffolk County Council] campaigning last May, it was very much still on people’s lips. Whatever the practicalities, they want to see some sort of restoration.”

shares

2 comments

  • Let's hope this bidder has infinite reserves of patience. Negotiating with Suffolk Coastal must be like walking through treacle with lead boots on. Just ask the Spa Gardens contractors...... Anyway, not holding my breath.....couldn't think of anyone less likely to seal the deal than SCDC.

    Report this comment

    paul

    Saturday, July 26, 2014

  • typical of the council,dragging its heels as ever

    Report this comment

    barry chark

    Friday, July 25, 2014

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

Will Quince pictured with newborn daughter Annie

Colchester MP Will Quince said he “just had to get on with it” after helping to deliver his newborn daughter at home on Saturday.

Tim Mason.

Tributes have been paid to an Ipswich man who successfully helped lobby the Government to reinstate a life-extending cancer drug.

Nitro Circus in action. Photo: Mark Watson

What a breathtaking show. At least I think it was, I watched parts of it peering through my fingers.

Nitro Circus in action. Photo: Mark Watson

Strap in Ipswich, you’re in for a wild ride when Travis Pastrana’s world famous Nitro Circus Live lands at Foxhall Stadium this summer.

Artist's impression of The Wonderhouse in Colchester

A heritage centre project expected to showcase artefacts from the history of Britain’s oldest recorded town will not be going ahead as planned after representatives decided not to pursue further funding to complete the concept.

Air Training Cadets corps parading through Felixstowe to mark 75th anniversary of the movement

A number of air training cadets paraded through two Suffolk towns today to mark 75 years of the movement.

The Essex and Herts Air Ambulance

A man fell critically ill in a Suffolk forest this morning.

Most read

Fred Olsen Travel Sale

cover

Click here to view
the Fred Olsen
Travel Sale

View
HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Streetlife

Great British Life

Great British Life
MyDate24 MyPhotos24