Central Youth Theatre fighting for its future in Wolverhampton
Central Youth Theatre faces a fight for its future after being told it needs to find a new home.
Thousands of young people have enjoyed being part of the Wolverhampton theatre group since it was founded 36 years ago.
The group is currently split between the former Stowheath Day Training Centre in East Park, where its collection of costumes and props is stored, and Newhampton Arts Centre in Whitmore Reans.
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But it has been told it will need to vacate Stowheath shortly – leaving it with nowhere to keep the thousands of items it has built up over the past three and a half decades.
The current crisis comes five years after ambitious plans to move into the former Co-op building in Lichfield Street fell through and the theatre group was forced to hand back hundreds of thousands of pounds in grants.
CYT co-director Holly Parry says the lack of a permanent home has left the group in dire straits.
She said: “We’re in Desperation Road. We have gone through the big dream of being in the Co-op with 10,000 sq ft, studio, workshop space, whereas now we will take what we can get.
“Realistically, we need somewhere with at least 7,500 sq ft space for our costumes – otherwise that will mean getting rid of everything.”
Today the new leader of Wolverhampton Council said he is planning “urgent talks” after being told about the plight of CYT.
Councillor Ian Brookfield said he was “horrified” to hear that the theatre was fighting for its future, praising it for helping thousands of youngsters in the city over the years.
He has vowed to arrange a meeting with theatre bosses as soon as possible.