ENCORE: President of the Lismore Theatre Company, Brian Best, is hoping Lismore City Council will renew the lease on the Rochdale Theatre or better still help out in the purchase of the building.
ENCORE: President of the Lismore Theatre Company, Brian Best, is hoping Lismore City Council will renew the lease on the Rochdale Theatre or better still help out in the purchase of the building. Jay Cronan

Theatre may go, but show goes on

THE drama and uncertainty surrounding the home of the Lismore Theatre Company has gone on for a long time.

Now its members are calling on the Lismore City Council to underwrite a happy ending.

The 39-year-old theatre group has rented its premises, the Rochdale Theatre, on the Bruxner Highway at Goonellabah, from the council since 1972, but have been without a lease since 2003.

“Everything is still up in the air,” theatre company president Brian Best said.

At last Tuesday night's council meeting Mr Best called for the council to renew the groups lease and repair damage to the theatre caused by storms.

However, the council decided it would explore the possibility of disposing of the building.

Mayor Jenny Dowell said such a move would not necessarily be the death knoll for the group.

“The council may well assist the theatre company to acquire the building,” Cr Dowell said.

Cr Dowell, a patron of the company, said the theatre provided an important creative outlet for many people of all ages.

“It is a gorgeous theatre,” Cr Dowell said.

The council has asked for a report to be prepared about a possible sale of the building.

In the meantime, any rent paid by the group will be used to conduct repairs on the building.

Mr Best said no matter what happens the theatre group would go on.



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