LATEST NEWS & ANNOUNCEMENTS
CORONAVIRUS / COVID-19 VENUE UPDATES:
TOWN HALL TO AID FOOD BANK DONATIONS DURING CRISIS
The Trustees of Royal Sutton Coldfield Community Town Hall Trust, the charity which runs Sutton Coldfield’s Town Hall has confirmed that it will collect donations of food for local food banks during the current COVID-19 crisis.
This is because the normal collection centre, which then distributes to two food banks in Erdington has had to close due to volunteer shortages.
The Town Hall was scheduled to stage Tudor Musical Theatre’s production of Legally Blonde last week, followed by a sold-out comedy show featuring Bill Bailey this Friday. Since government restrictions were brought in on social distancing, all shows after 15th March and into the summer are postponed until later in the year and into 2021.
The Town Hall will continue to operate with skeleton staffing for blood collections and community requirements resulting from the coronavirus crisis. The first request for help was from The Trussell Trust Foodbank Network, which runs Six Ways Baptist Church and George Road Church Food Banks in Erdington. Food and household items are urgently needed by both these and other Sutton Coldfield Food Banks in the coming weeks, as more families than ever are hit by the economic impact of the virus.
In a statement, The Trussell Trust said “Those who have the least resources to cope with this crisis must not be forgotten at this time. Some of the specific challenges we face as a result of the spread of the virus are:
- A significant proportion of our 28,000+ volunteers are older people, many of whom are now not able to volunteer because they are in higher risk groups.
- Many of the people who need to use the food banks in our network have health issues and so may be needing to self-isolate or comply most strictly with social distancing guidelines.
- Maintaining food stocks at a time when many people are going out less or are more urgently focused on providing for their own households.
- Potential for increased demand where workers are being laid off or shifts reduced due to impact on businesses.
Gerald Goshawk, who runs Erdington Foodbank explained “Erdington Foodbank is already one of the busiest in the whole of the UK. We are now experiencing heightening demand; together with increasing pressure to deliver to people who are in isolation; and major problems with obtaining food donations. We would be so massively grateful for help from the people of Sutton Coldfield.”
“Any non-perishable foodstuffs are appreciated, but our current priorities are:-
UHT milk, Sugar, Tinned custard, Pasta sauce, Coffee, Fruit, Packet rice and Rice pudding. We will soon need to replenish stocks of Meat, Vegetables, Fish, Cereals, Vegetarian meals and Tomatoes”. Non-food items such as feminine hygiene, toilet rolls, deodorants and soap are always needed. Those who cannot leave the house at all or who would prefer to donate money for stock can do so via the website https://www.trusselltrust.org/what-we-do/
Birmingham City Council’s Mick Brown commented “As a Councillor for Gravelly Hill Ward where residents often depend on the good work foodbanks do to support their local communities, including the ones at Six Ways Baptist Church and George Road, as part of the Trussell Trust Foodbank Network. I can only thank them, the trustees of Royal Sutton Coldfield Town Hall Trust and the many people who make donations to this essential service. Whether donating 1 item or 10, every item makes a difference to the collective effort to support individuals and families at this difficult time”
MP for Royal Sutton Coldfield Andrew Mitchell added “At this very difficult time for everyone, our Town Hall and its staff and friends are playing an important and safe role in supporting this vital work. I want to thank them”.
The Town Hall will accept donations of food to its main entrance foyer on Mondays and Fridays for the next few months, commencing Friday 3rd April, 10am – 2pm. Donors can incorporate the drop off into their daily exercise or park in the short term spaces by the Cenotaph in King Edwards Square. Staff are engaging in strict social distancing to reassure donors.
The Town Hall’s Managing Director Julie Rennison will be one of those staff on site. “Locals can simply drop off any donations in the Entrance Vestibule – we will wave a thank you for the other side of our inner glass doors!” Those who want to help while self-isolating can donate to the website mentioned, who will buy in bulk food stocks to distribute locally.
The Town Hall will not be keeping food on the premises and it is a drop off point only, not a food bank collection service. Over the coming days, the staff remaining at the town hall will push the message of donations via social media. Local comedy actress and voice over artist Josephine Enright from Erdington, has volunteered her services in narrating an information advert. The Town Hall would like to engage a volunteer video editor to compile a short piece from home. If interested, please contact Town Hall MD Julie Rennison at firstname.lastname@example.org
In line with government advice, we would like to remind our audiences that the theatre remains closed and, along with this, from Monday 30th March 2020, we will be operating with skeleton staff, who will oversee the upkeep of the venue and the business whilst we are operationally closed.
This means that, from Monday 30th March also, our box office will also be suspended. With this in mind, as no staff will be working, we ask that you please do not contact the venue for refunds re. cancelled or rescheduled shows/events.
All refund requests for rescheduled shows WILL be processed and dealt with as soon as government restrictions are lifted and we are able to resume normal operations of the venue.
If any subsequent shows/events (June 26th onwards) are to be affected we will announce more via our social media (Twitter & Facebook @suttontownhall).
In the meantime, a defining trait of Sutton Coldfield Town Hall throughout its existence has been its unparalleled ability to adapt and serve the needs of its community. Now, more so than ever, this adaptability is needed.
It is with the above in mind that we are in talks with a number of parties and relevant authorities to explore ways in which the venue can be of use to help ease pressure on those in our community who are currently shouldering much of the burden of these trying times. We will post more on this as matters progress.
NHS Blood Donations will STILL be taking place as scheduled. You can register and find dates/donation time slots HERE >> www.blood.co.uk
As ever, thank you for your understanding and patience in this constantly-evolving and ever more troubling time we are living in. This virus is bigger than any one person and so, please do follow government advice and think of and care for those around you. We will beat this together and rest assured, we will have one hell of a venue ready for you when it is once again safe for us to reopen to the public.
With love, gratitude and best wishes
Your Town Hall Team 🎭 💕
**For urgent Town Hall matters and business enquiries, please email Managing Director Julie Rennison, email@example.com OR Marketing & Events Manager, Alex Goetschel, firstname.lastname@example.org**
Re: RESCHEDULING & REFUNDS
For affected shows and events where the Town Hall Box Office has been your ticket provider, tickets will automatically transfer to the reschedule the new date – same row, same seat. For week long shows for instance, if you booked for the Thursday show originally, your tickets will transfer for the Thursday show in the rescheduled week.
As you will have seen, our team has been working non-stop to reschedule Spring shows to reschedule shows into the Summer and Autumn and we are emailing ticket holders with the rescheduled dates – please check email “Junk” Folders!
If you CANNOT attend the new date, you can of course request a refund. Our standard admin fee for this is £1.50 per ticket (not transaction). Some customers have asked if we can reduce this to £1.50 per transaction or to not charge at all.
Although we CAN do this, please do be aware that, at present, our box office is running at a loss with no income, and so any help you can give us by donating this admin fee helps us to stay running while the shows are not taking place.
To enable the box office team to function in the most efficient way possible, please try to avoid ringing the box office. Instead, please email either email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
In the wake of the Prime Minister’s statement last night we, alongside the vast majority of other theatres, are taking the difficult decision to postpone upcoming events for the foreseeable future as, with the new restrictions in place, operating as usual in this climate is simply unsustainable.
We appreciate the inconvenience and the headache this will cause and are sympathetic to our audiences’ personal circumstances. Equally so, in this incredibly troubling and uncertain time, we ask for your patience and understanding particularly for our staff. We have an incredibly small but dedicated team who saved the venue once and they will be working as hard as they can in the coming days and weeks as we try to navigate the landscape of this ever-evolving pandemic.
We hope that our work to save this iconic and vitally important Sutton Coldfield venue will not be in vain and whilst we fight to save it once more, we ask you all to please stay clean, happy and healthy.
AFFECTED SHOWS AND SCHEDULED POSTPONEMENTS AND/OR CANCELLATIONS:
Thursday 19 March 2020 – The Scummy Mummies >> RESCHEDULED WEDNESDAY 26th AUGUST 2020
Friday 20 March 2020 – Jeremy Vine Town Hall Talk >> RESCHEDULED FRIDAY 23rd OCTOBER 2020
Saturday 21 March 2020 – Singalong 80s >> RESCHEDULED FRIDAY 11TH SEPTEMBER 2020
24 – 28 March 2020 – Tudor Musical Comedy Society’s “Legally Blonde” >> RESCHEDULED TUESDAY 4th AUGUST until SATURDAY 8th AUGUST 2020
Friday 3 April 2020 – LIVE at the Town Hall Bill Bailey >> FRIDAY 21st AUGUST 2020
Wednesday 8 April 2020 – The Little Mix Show from 8th April >> THURSDAY 27TH AUGUST 2020
Friday 10 April 2020 – Sutton Soul Club >> FRIDAY 25TH SEPTEMBER 2020
Sunday 19 April 2020 – Sutton Coldfield Vintage & Arts Fair >> SUNDAY 12TH JULY 2020
Friday 17 April 2020 – Definitely Mightbe X Changing Man >> WEDNESDAY 19th AUGUST 2020
Friday 24 April 2020 – Jess Phillips’ Town Hall Talk >> RESCHEDULED FRIDAY 8TH JANUARY 2021
28 April – 2 May 2020 Manor Musical Theatre Company’s “Crazy For You” >> TBC
5 – 9 May 2020 – SCMYT Jesus Christ Superstar >> RESCHEDULED TO TUESDAY 10th – SATURDAY 14th NOVEMBER 2020
Thursday 7 May 2020 – VE Commemorative Matinee >> THURSDAY 3RD SEPTEMBER 2020
Sunday 10 May 2020 – Haydn’s The Creation – RESCHEDULED SUNDAY 11TH OCTOBER 2020
Monday 11 May 2020 – David Starkey Town Hall Talk >> RESCHEDULED TO SUNDAY 18TH OCTOBER 2020 (3PM)
Friday 15 May 2020 – Knightmare LIVE >> RESCHEDULED FRIDAY 9TH OCTOBER 2020
Saturday 16 May 2020 – RSCO – CANCELLED. Royal Sutton Coldfield Orchestra are instead just moving ahead with their scheduled Autumn 2020 concert at the Town Hall SATURDAY 16TH OCTOBER 2020
Thursday 21 May 2020 – Ultimate Coldplay – RESCHEDULED THURSDAY 24TH SEPTEMBER 2020
Wednesday 10 June 2020 – John Motson’s Pre-Season Chat Show >> RESCHEDULED WEDNESDAY 23rd SEPTEMBER 2020
Saturday 13 June 2020 – Beacon Fundraiser – RESCHEDULED SATURDAY 12TH JUNE 2021
Friday 3 July 2020 – The Gary Powndland Show – RESCHEDULED FRIDAY 18TH SEPTEMBER 2020
Re. Events marked “TBC” – are in discussions to relocate. New dates will be announced in due course.
**All tickets purchased for original dates are still valid for the newly rescheduled dates**