Burnham-on-Sea & Highbridge Town Council

Arts Council England supports The Princess

Arts Council England supports The Princess

Princess Theatre Auditorium

The Princess Theatre and Arts Centre has today received the news that its application to the Arts Council Emergency Response Fund has been successful.  

The £28649 grant, funded using National Lottery resources, means that the organisation now has a COVID-19 lifeline, ensuring its future.

The Princess has been part of Burnham on Sea and Highbridge’s landscape since 1869, open to the public for performances for over 150 years.  It has played a big part in local and national history; hosting coronation dinners for royalty, housing the local fire station and town council as well as being an important venue during the second world war.

Since lockdown, staff at the Princess Theatre have been working hard to personally contact all customers; advising of rescheduled dates and refunding tickets.  This evolving situation could have seen the Theatre and Arts Centre devastated as they were not eligible for the governments business rate holiday or hospitality grants.

Business Development Officer, Beccy Armory, says “We are incredibly grateful to the Arts Council England for this support.  It is a real stamp of approval for the work we have been doing, the progress that has been made in my first 6 months and our future business plan.

“Our end of year accounts show that income was up and expenditure was down but the arrival of COVID-19 and necessary lockdown measures meant that overnight we lost 94% of our earned income.  For every £5 the theatre earns, £4.70 of that comes from our doors being open.  We needed a rescue package to not only support the hard work the council has done for the theatre over the years but the new work that was already gathering momentum.

“This funding not only covers some of our lost income to date but also some really exciting projects that will allow us to connect with our audiences whilst our doors are closed.  

“We cannot be complacent however; we are working on huge cost cutting measures to ensure that our subsidy is used wisely and the grant will only cover us for a short period.”

Of the current closure Beccy says: “From the start of lockdown it was my intention to never cancel.  Our strategy has been very clear: We must reschedule; our community needs something to look forward to when we get back to the new normal.

“Current evidence shows that the first thing we all want to do, is get out and spend time doing what we love with our nearest and dearest.  As consumers we are overwhelmed with choices to entertain us online and it is incredible how so many performers have adapted to this medium. But nothing compares to seeing live entertainment and this is evident in how events and festivals for the future are already selling out.”

Cllr Louise Parkin, Chair of the Princess Management Committee has said “It has been a huge effort to turn the Princess around this past year and to receive funding during these tough unprecedented times means that we can support our community with a continued cultural and creative economic offer for the future.”


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Financial Risk Management Policy - March 2023

Grant Application Kings Coronation Form

The Coronation of His Majesty King Charles III will take place on Saturday 6th May 2023, with an additional bank holiday on Monday 8th May 2023.

We are keen to hear from groups/organisations in Burnham-on-Sea and Highbridge that are looking to celebrate the Coronation. The Town Council has £1500 available to allocate to events being organised to celebrate the Kings Coronation. The maximum grant to be allocated per event will be £500.

You must meet the following criteria for your application to be considered:

– The event will be open to all members of the public

– The event will be free of charge

– The event will take place within the Coronation weekend

– The event will take place within Burnham on Sea or Highbridge


Applications will close on Monday 6th March at midday. 

Your organisation and contact details

What happens next....
Applications will be considered at the Finance and Resources Committee Meeting on Monday 13th March 2023. You will be notified after this date whether your application has been successful.
Burnham & Highbridge Town Council takes your privacy seriously and will only use your personal information for the purposes of contacting you about this grant. The Council’s privacy notice can be found here.

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