York & North Yorkshire

Curtain closes on Scarborough's seafront theatre

The Futurist, Scarborough
Image caption The Futurist, in Scarborough, pictured above in 1969, opened in 1921

Scarborough's Futurist Theatre has closed after more than 90 years of staging concerts, shows and films.

The venue, which opened in 1921, was shut after its operators' lease expired on Sunday and is set to be boarded up.

It will then be mothballed for up to three months to allow potential operators to come forward, but if that is unsuccessful it will close for good.

The Save Our Futurist group has said it is in the process of putting together a "very professional" business case.

Image caption The seafront theatre was bought by Scarborough Council in 1985

Campaign co-ordinator Patricia David was among those to attend the theatre on Sunday.

"The feeling was of absolute sadness and horror," she said. "We must fight [the decision to close the theatre]. We can't buckle.

"It is iconic and it can be restored."

Ms David said, if successful, the group hoped to repair the venue's roof, restore the auditorium and improve facilities at a cost of about £3m in order to attract "big moneymaking shows".

Image caption The group hopes to repair the "iconic" theatre and bring it back to use

The decision to close the theatre was made by Scarborough Borough Council's Conservative leader Tom Fox in December, following a report published in June which said the site was "beyond the point" of refurbishment.

The Futurist is within an area earmarked for redevelopment that includes the town hall.

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