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Raise the Roof: We're halfway there

Raise the Roof: We're halfway there

posted 14 Feb 2022

The Joseph Rowntree Theatre is halfway to reaching its Raise the Roof fundraising appeal target of £95,000. It launched the appeal in 2020, to raise much needed funds to help pay for repairs to the theatre’s leaking roofs. The roofs are the original ones from when the theatre was built in 1935. They’ve stood the test of time but are now in urgent need of repair.

The theatre locked down – like the rest of the country – in March 2020. So, with the usual routes of fundraising no longer available, it had to look for new and innovative ways to raise money.

The campaign launched with a video recording of the song, Up on The Roof , recorded by York-based artists at home during lock down and put together by Ollie Nash, one of the theatre’s stage managers and Jessica Douglas, a regular musical director of shows produced at the theatre.

Throughout the past 18 months, so many people have stepped up to the mark and found different ways to fundraise, for example, hosting the Yorkshire’s Got Talent competition online and Zoom dance classes, taking part in the Save Our Theatre and Buy a Tile campaigns, buying tickets for the Grand Christmas Raffle – there were so many fundraising events, both big and small. All have contributed to helping the theatre reach the halfway mark.

Barbara Boyce, Joseph Rowntree Theatre Trustee and Volunteer Director, said: “It’s been a long, hard 18 months but this week we are absolutely thrilled to report that we have passed £50,000 in fundraising for our Raise the Roof Appeal. We’re had amazing help and support from so many people, finding so many new and different ways to raise money for us. We are so very grateful to everyone who has helped us reach this milestone.  Being able to repair the theatre roofs and make them watertight is essential and will safeguard the future of our building, ensuring we can continue being one of York’s most cherished theatre venues for years to come.”

A grade two listed building, the theatre had to seek Listed Building Consent for the replacement roofs, which has now been granted. The theatre still needs to reach its target of £95,000.

For more information about how you can get involved and help reach that target, email: fundraising@jrtheatre.co.uk