Queen’s Theatre in Hornchurch reopens to the public next week
PUBLISHED: 12:00 28 August 2020
The Queen’s Theatre in Hornchurch is set to reopen its doors to the public on Thursday, September 3 after being closed for more than five months.
With a further announcement on the autumn season to arrive on Tuesday, September 1, excitement is growing as the theatre prepares to welcome patrons back to a new and improved space.
Though the temporary loss of the venue has been acutely felt, the improvements made behind the scenes ensure the period was used to good effect.
As part of the QNew Transformation, a number of changes have been made to improve accessibility; there is now ramp access at either side of the stage in the foyer, and lowered counters have been installed in the box office and green room.
The stage’s new name — The Other Stage — is proclaimed in a pink neon sign, and a community library has been commissioned and built by the Young Changemakers.
A number of technological improvements have been made, including the installation of:
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• A Sennheiser radio frequency hearing system which will improve the experience for patrons with visual or hearing impairments;
• An LED lighting system which will provide a new working light in the dock area and improve energy efficiency;
• Modular radio mics to complement the existing system.
The foyer has also been given something of a revamp, with new furniture and seating areas installed along with air conditioning.
Improvement works have also been done to the building’s roof and windows, and the backstage toilets have been made gender neutral.
Of these enhancements, the theatre’s executive director Mathew Russell said: “The theatre is immensely proud of the continued work undertaken during the building’s closure, and is thrilled to welcome its audiences back to a newly modernised space.
“The QNew project has been made possible by generous contributions from Arts Council England, London Borough of Havering, Veolia Maintenance Trust, City Bridge Trust, Ian McKellen On Stage, The Theatre Trust, Equity Charitable Trust, Tesco Bags of Help, McDonald’s Romford, Fowler, Smith & Jones Charities and Rotary Club of Brentwood á Becket.”
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