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National Theatre of Scotland raises £1m surplus on Rockvilla HQ funding target

The exterior of the National Theatre of Scotland's Rockvilla building. Photo: Drew Farrell The exterior of the National Theatre of Scotland's Rockvilla building. Photo: Drew Farrell
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The National Theatre of Scotland has raised £1 million more than expected towards its new headquarters, Rockvilla.

The company moves into the remodelled and extensively refurbished warehouse space on November 4 and today announced that it has raised £5.1 million of the £6.5 million needed for the build. It had initially expected to have raised around £4 million by this point.

Alyson Hagan, the NTS director of finance and administration, told The Stage the funding gap was due to be met by a loan from the Scottish government. Because of the surplus, the theatre is only seeking half of the £2.5 million loan.

She said: “We had originally been looking for a loan to close any funding gap of up to £2.5 million. We are now looking to reduce that down to about half.

“Every pound we are saving there can be put it into the activities of the organisation, rather than into the operations and costs of the building. That was one of the key business cases, that we would only agree to look at a new building if it would cost us less – or at least the same as what it currently is.”

The NTS is currently running out of four buildings. It is to retain one, and consolidate its other operations into Rockvilla, which will have three rehearsal spaces, costume workshops, stores and facilities, a technical workshop for restoring sets, offices and an area for community group rehearsals.

Rockvilla will be officially opened at the end of January 2017, after a period in which staff and creatives will modify the building to fit their needs. The NTS operates a “without walls” policy and, as such, has no permanent theatre.

Hagan added: “Rockvilla is not open to the public, but we want the staff and our other colleagues, the creatives who come and work with us, to feel that it is their place and feel comfortable working in it.”

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