Plans for a 567-seat theatre in Hampshire, costing £3.6 million, have been rejected by Fareham Borough Council.
Community company Titchfield Festival Theatre had planned to build the new venue to host its productions as well as visiting professional shows, including small-scale opera and comedy nights.
The amateur company already runs three theatres in the area, including the 100-seat Acorn Studio, the 200-seat Oak Theatre and a barn space, which has a capacity of 175.
Fareham Borough Council rejected the planning application for a fourth theatre due to concerns over the venue’s “impact on the local road network” and noise from the increased number of patrons.
A statement from Titchfield Festival Theatre said it was “extremely disappointed” by the council’s decision and said it will “continue to make the case for the new theatre in the community”.
The statement said: “The company is one of Europe’s most prolific community theatre companies, producing more than 27 plays in-house during 2019 in three different venues.
“Our plan is to build a 600-seat facility, with a new foyer and courtyard, related bars and facilities. The whole project will cost in the region of £3.6 million with much of this money already raised – and none of it provided from public funds.”
It added: “It is therefore confusing for everyone who supports Titchfield Festival Theatre, and somewhat hurtful, that Fareham Borough Council appears to be so negative about what we are doing for the community.
“We provide a superb arts venue for both amateur and professionals and a home for many community projects.”
Titchfield Festival Theatre has also launched a petition to gather support for the prospective theatre.
Fareham Borough Council said it was unable to comment further on the planning application.