Celebrating Pocklington Arts Centre’s £540,000 refurbishment

Steve Hunt, from Mason Clarke Associates, who was the project manager for all of the refurbishment, with arts centre manager Janet Farmer.
Steve Hunt, from Mason Clarke Associates, who was the project manager for all of the refurbishment, with arts centre manager Janet Farmer.

Delighted staff and volunteers at Pocklington Arts Centre are celebrating the completion of the venue’s £540,000 revamp.

Refurbishment work began in November last year and has taken five months to complete.

The new cafe area on the first floor.

The new cafe area on the first floor.

The redevelopment has improved disabled access and security throughout the building, added a spacious open plan foyer, additional office space, meeting room facilities for external hire and a intimate second cinema screen dedicated to specialist film (foreign language, documentary and shorts) and live broadcasts. The aim of the work was to enhance the customer experience, make the venue more accessible and to ensure its long term sustainability.

Staff say the reaction from people who have seen the reopened venue has been overwhelmingly positive. An open day will be held on Saturday (30 April) from 11am for the general public to view the new facilities. A special preview will run from 10am for members of the Friends of Pocklington Arts Centre.

The venue’s manager, Janet Farmer, said: “The venue’s transformation would not have been possible without the financial support of Arts Council England, Pocklington Town Council and The Friends of Pocklington Arts Centre. Thanks must also go to Steve Hunt from Mason Clarke Associates and construction firm Hobson Porter. The reaction from everyone at the venue - staff, volunteers and customers - has been fantastic. This is a very exciting time for the venue, especially as we are part of such a thriving and expanding town.”

Film screenings are due to recommence on 6 May with forthcoming films including ‘Eye in the Sky’, ‘Florence Foster Jenkins’ and the Academy Award winning ‘Room’. Forthcoming live events at the venue include sold out performances by former politician Gyles Brandreth, Scottish songstress Eddi Reader and comedian Mark Watson.

Scothern Construction will start in mid-May to refurbish the venue’s studio floor, with the work expected to run for eight weeks.

This project is being funded by a grant of more than £27,500 from WREN, after Pocklington Town Council successfully bid for funding.