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Pubs and clubs to host theatre as £186k funding given to Northern Social Circuit

Red Ladder's Wrong'un will tour as part of the Northern Social Circuit. Photo: Red Ladder Red Ladder's Wrong'un will tour as part of the Northern Social Circuit. Photo: Red Ladder
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Pubs and social clubs in the north of England are to be transformed into theatre venues as part of a new project given the green light by Arts Council England.

Red Ladder Theatre Company has been given £186,463 as part of ACE’s strategic touring fund and will create the Northern Social Circuit with partners the West Yorkshire Playhouse, the Civic Barnsley and Cast in Doncaster.

The programme will tour eight productions to 15 non-traditional venues including pubs, social clubs, rugby league and sports clubs, in a bid to nurture new audiences across the region.

Red Ladder’s funding is one of nine projects across the country to be awarded a total of £1.5 million as part of ACE’s strategic touring programme, which helps arts organisations take their work to areas of low engagement.

Other successful projects include Terry Bessman’s play Terriers, which will be toured to youth and community venues in the North West and the Midlands in order to reach disengaged young people in areas of high deprivation, or those who are exposed to gun and gang crime.

A new programme touring live literature to pubs across the South East and east of England has also been funded, alongside a community touring programme for the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment.

Announcing the funding, ACE’s director of touring, Michelle Dickson, said: “It’s vital that no one is deprived of excellent art and culture just because of where they live. Social spaces are incredibly important or any community – these are places where stories are shared, made and enjoyed.”

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