meeting reaction

The public meeting held at the Theatre Royal last Thursday 10th January was unlike anything I have experienced before and I suspect will remain a unique experience. I was positively challenged at the end of the meeting to accept the offer to become chair of the Bristol Old Vic. Immediately before Christmas I said:“I am daunted by the offer, it is an amazing challenge. I have total faith in the will of Bristol to regenerate its unique performing arts hub. I am up for the journey provided that I can be useful, make a positive difference and unite the energies of Bristol behind the re-invention of the Bristol Old Vic for Bristol in the 21st century. I plan to consult widely with the Bristol community before taking up this offer.”I have received a greater level of support from a wider constituency than I could possibly have expected. The City Council in particular have been superb. The final piece of consultation which remains to be resolved is with Arts Council England. BOV has submitted a proposition outlining a timetable and process to re-open and re-invent the BOV as a power house of creative excellence and a theatrical hub for the city. ACE will respond at the end of January.I will not make a final decision until ACE confirm their position but am increasingly sure that we will be moving forward together.I continue to be Managing Director of Watershed and this will continue to be my main role. Throughout my time at Watershed I have continued to undertake freelance work. I will make space for BOV by dropping future freelance work until such time as the BOV is re-invented and operational.I would like to thank everyone who came to the public meeting and to apologise to all those who could not get in due the unprecedented interest. We will be hosting regular discussions so please come along to one of these sessions to share your thoughts.

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