Yorkshire's top theatres and culture venues forced to close over coronavirus

Theatres and other culture venues across Yorkshire have shut amid COVID-19 fears.

Tuesday, 17th March 2020, 1:54 pm
Updated Tuesday, 17th March 2020, 2:29 pm

Leeds Grand Theatre, City Varieties Music Hall and Hyde Park Picture House will close, as will Sheffield Theatres venues and York Theatre Royal.

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“These are unprecedented times - combined we have been open for over 400 years - and closing our venues is not a decision that has been taken lightly. In truth, this will have a severe impact on the future of Leeds Grand Theatre & Opera House Ltd. - our future is now uncertain - but the safety of our visitors and staff has always been our priority.

City Varieties, Leeds. Picture: Bruce Rollinson.

“We will continue to follow advice from the Government and work closely with the touring Companies and artists that are due to visit our venues over the coming months and hope that we will be able to open our doors again very soon."

At Leeds Playhouse, all performances of Oliver Twist, Be The Example, Be The Voice and Missing People are cancelled this week.

Hull City Council and Hull Culture and Leisure have closed both Hull City Hall and Hull New Theatre to the public and cancelled all performances with immediate effect for the next three months.

"This suspension of performances will impact not only our audience but also our committed and talented workforce," a statement reads.

Scarborough Spa. Picture: Gerard Binks.

"We will work within the government guidelines to ensure the safety and wellbeing of our staff and customers during this time."

Sheffield Theatres, which runs venues such as the Crucible and the Lyceum, announced today that following the recommendation from the UK government yesterday, it would to the public with immediate effect.

All current performances - Run Sister Run, Coriolanus and Cabaret - have been cancelled and the venues will be cancelling future performances through to April 5 at least.

In a statement, Sheffield Theatres said: "We appreciate that these are worrying times for many people and thank you for your understanding as we continue to follow all available advice. We are sorry for any disappointment our closure will cause but we are committed to playing our part in helping people stay safe. Please look after yourselves and each other."

The city's S1 Artspace gallery is closed with immediate effect and all public events cancelled until further notice, but it is "looking at ways to deliver our work online".

All events York Theatre Royal will be cancelled from today until April 11, and all performances scheduled to take place at Bradford Theatres’ venues this week be cancelled or rescheduled.

remain open.

Katie Town, executive director, said: "‘Theatre Royal Wakefield takes the health of our visitors, staff, artists and volunteers very seriously.

"We would like to reiterate that there have been no cases of Coronavirus reported within the building or by Theatre Royal Wakefield staff, and recent visitors have no reason to be concerned."

Harrogate Theatre will be closed until March 31, but the decision will be reviewed again during the week starting March 23.

Leeds First Direct Arena has postponed several events - which can be seen here - and is "liaising with promoters and organisers of the events that are scheduled".

SIVLive, which runs events at FlyDSA Arena, Sheffield City Hall, Scarborough Spa and Wetherby Pavilion, also said it was "liaising with all parties concerned" and was monitoring the situation.

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