CHESTER’S Storyhouse theatre is set to enhance its sustainable energy infrastructure with additional solar panels thanks to new funding.

The theatre has secured funding from the Theatres Trust Theatre Improvement Scheme, in collaboration with the Wolfson Foundation, which will see it share a £115,982 pot with six other theatres looking to further their environmental sustainability.

This contribution comes as part of the renewed funding for the Theatre Improvement Scheme, with an additional £510,000 to be awarded over the next three years.

The installation of additional solar panels will triple the theatre's solar energy capacity, resulting in reduced carbon emissions, enhanced self-sustained power generation, and significant cost savings.

Chester and District Standard: Existing solar panels on the roof of Storyhouse.Existing solar panels on the roof of Storyhouse. (Image: Storyhouse.)

Storyhouse in Chester is a theatre, cinema, library and community hub, especially crucial during the winter months when it participates in the Warm Hub initiative, welcoming residents of all ages from across the borough to come in and stay warm. Therefore, ensuring efficient heating is paramount.

Kate Mylchreest, Director of Development for Storyhouse said: “Storyhouse is delighted to be selected as part of the latest round of the Theatre Improvement Scheme. This funding will enable us to implement projects aimed at reducing energy consumption, enhancing operational sustainability, and reinvesting savings into our artistic and community programme.”

Paul Ramsbottom, Chief Executive of the Wolfson Foundation, said: “The projects supported by Theatres Trust exemplify how practical changes can significantly enhance an organization's environmental and financial sustainability. Amidst the challenges faced by the UK's performing arts sector, we are delighted to extend our partnership with Theatres Trust for another three years, continuing our support for innovative responses to the climate crisis.”

Jon Morgan Theatres Trust Director said: “Theatres Trust is delighted to support Storyhouse through our Theatre Improvement Scheme in association with the Wolfson Foundation. Increasing environmental sustainability is hugely important, but all the more so in venues such as Storyhouse that function as warm hubs for their communities.”