Funding Secured from Government Cultural Recovery Fund

Funding Secured from Government Cultural Recovery Fund

12 October 2020




We are delighted to announce that the Government Cultural Recovery Fund will be investing to enable Watford Palace Theatre to re-open our doors to our community safely, and bring creativity and culture back to the heart of the town, for Christmas and beyond.

Our ambition is to bring our community Christmas cheer; bring our local freelancers opportunities for employment; empower new diverse voices in our community engagement work; maximise our reach into our evolving local demographics; and most important of all, make sure our building is adaptable to the changing context of the pandemic, and that our facilities and training fulfil the highest possible standards of safety to our audiences, artists and staff. 

CHRISTMAS AT THE PALACE will be a feast of brilliant, affordable, local festive entertainment throughout December, featuring DAME TERRY’s MERRY CHRISTMAS - details will be announced this Wednesday 14th October.

THREE COUNTIES FREELANCERS FESTIVAL.  Watford Palace Theatre is a regional powerhouse in the Three Counties.  We are proud that we will now be able to give a much-needed platform to freelance creatives in the region, whose employment prospects have been devastated by the pandemic, whilst offering our local audiences a rich range of shows and digital experiences to enjoy.

We will be investing in DIVERSE AND LOCAL community arts facilitators, to help us deepen our connection with our diverse communities, and undertaking audience research into the changing demographics of our town and region.

First and foremost, we will be investing in making our beautiful heritage building Covid-secure, and creating new performance spaces that can accommodate socially distanced performances, so that we can welcome our audiences safely home to Watford Palace Theatre. 

The grant is up to a total of £248k. 

Artistic Director and Chief Executive Brigid Larmour said:


‘We are incredibly grateful for this vote of confidence in our work here at the Watford Palace.  Our small and dedicated team works hard to deliver value for money to our community.  This investment will allow us to reopen our doors for Christmas, and to support some of the brilliant freelancers in our town and region, who have been so hard hit by the pandemic, and help us connect with and develop new audiences for the theatre in the future.’


Notes to Editor:

Christmas at the Palace will be a season of films and theatre across December. The programme will be on sale shortly. Our box office remains closed, so we ask that customers book online until our staff return from furlough. If a performance must be cancelled due to new government guidance on Covid-19, all tickets will be fully refunded.


Watford Palace Theatre - Great stories that entertain, provoke and inspire, on stage and in our streets. The Palace inspires and entertains through inventive, ambitious and inclusive drama, new plays, musicals, dance and family shows; free outdoor festivals; diverse stand-up; and a much-loved traditional pantomime. It reflects its diverse communities, and fully represents women, both onstage and behind the scenes whilst celebrating and developing creativity and skill in the community and with young people. The theatre’s locally produced shows and home-grown talent have toured nationally and internationally, been seen on BBC iPlayer, won awards and transferred to the West End.  Watford Palace Theatre - inspiration on your doorstep. Recent productions include audience favourite Talking Heads, an all-female Gaslight; the UK’s first African-American Glass Menagerie; Ayckbourn’s Absurd Person Singular; an all-female Much Ado About Nothing; Broken Glass; and Elton John’s Glasses.  World premieres include musicals Miss Meena & the Masala Queens and I Capture the Castle, and plays good dog by Arinze Kene, Folk by Tom Wells, Wipers by Ishy Din, Poppy+George by Diane Samuels, Coming Up by Neil d’Souza, Jefferson’s Garden by Timberlake Wertenbaker, Love Me Do by Marksand Gran, An Intervention and Medea by Mike Bartlett, Shiver by Daniel Kanaber, Virgin by E.V. Crowe, Override by StaceyGregg, Perfect Match by Gary Owen, Jumpers for Goalposts by Tom Wells, Our Brother David byAnthony Clark, Our Father by Charlotte Keatley and Family Business by Julian Mitchell. Creative Associates are central to WPT’s vision: they include Resident Partner Company Rifco Theatre Company, and tiata fahodzi.