Guildford’s treasured Yvonne Arnaud theatre has been awarded £248,000 from the Arts Council England Covid Emergency Fund.

Director Joanna Read said today: “We are relieved and heartened to receive this critical support. A small staff team is doing all we can to keep the theatre alive for the future and this support will help us plan for the new year and beyond.”

Joanna Read, theatre director

The curtain fell on March 16 as the pandemic struck deep. In July, patrons were told the traditional annual pantomime would have to be cancelled due to Covid-19 restrictions. But the theatre has recently re-opened with a socially distanced auditorium as a “virus-secure” venue for some performances.