On Sunday 14th October I attended, in my capacity as Arts Minister, the UK Theatre Awards.
Our brilliant Northampton theatre, the Royal and Derngate was also represented there and had been nominated for an award for ‘best touring production’ with their play ‘Love from a Stranger’ – a play I have seen myself at the Derngate- and I was delighted to hear that our theatre is continuing to do extremely well.
I am a huge supporter of the theatre industry and was honoured to have been able to attend and present one of the prizes. The UK Theatre Awards are the only nationwide awards to honour and celebrate the achievements of regional theatre all around the UK. The Awards were held in the London Guildhall.
For centuries, theatres have provided entertainment to millions of people in this country and now more than ever they continue to thrive: UK Theatre (which represents over 200 venues across the country) recorded a yearly rise in the number of performances in 2017 by 3% to 44,135. Theatres are of great value to our culture as well as our economy with local theatres proving to be strong drivers of local economies and tourism to areas around the country.