As well as our regular productions at Sharnbrook Mill Theatre, we also organise fundraising activities to support the future of our building and our theatre group.
The award in 2020 of the prestigious Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service( QAVS) – the highest royal honour for a group – recognised the huge commitment that so many volunteers have made over many years to help to transform a redundant, historic water mill into a thriving community theatre.
In 2012, with its 70th Anniversary the following year, the Trust launched a major appeal to raise up to £300,000 to install a green energy water source heat pump based heating and appropriate cooling systems at the theatre. Historically the building, parts of which date back to 1703, was very cold in winter and uncomfortably hot in summer. The heating system is now operational and fully funded. The air conditioning in the rehearsal/club room is also complete, funded through the ’Cool Down’ appeal. However the installation of the auditorium air conditioning system, which has also just been completed, has only been possible thanks to some personal loans which have to be repaid.
This latest major investment, on top of the thousands of pounds that have been spent on facilities in the building, for which the Trust own the freehold, is part of the continuing commitment to the maintenance and development of this part of our local heritage. The continuing support of everyone who loves the Mill and is proud of what has been achieved will be needed if the Trust’s investment is to be protected in the future.
How was the money raised?
The fundraising team have worked extremely hard, putting on many very enjoyable events that have raised significant sums. A basic principle is that fundraising must be fun and the loyal support of many people, many of whom are not Mill members, shows how popular the events have been. The support of our Patrons, Joanna David and Hugh Laurie, has been hugely helpful. In addition, we have received significant grants from charitable trusts and some generous personal donations. Lastly, ongoing projects like the 50/50 Club and online shopping connections have provided additional revenue.
What projects are in the future?
The first priority is to pay back any money that has been loaned to us. When that has been achieved, the resurfacing of the car park is likely to be the next project. This will probably cost close to £40,000.
What can I do to help?
There are several important ways you can contribute to our fundraising efforts.
- You could join our fundraising team and help us to organise events and initiatives to fund the future of the Mill Theatre. If you would like to get involved, contact us through the website and one of us will be in touch.
- You can attend our fundraising events which are always advertised on the website and on social media.
- You can contribute via online shopping. This doesn’t cost a thing and there are different options available depending on where you shop.
- You can join our 50/50 Club, donate money and potentially win a monthly prize.
- You can make a direct donation to Sharnbook Mill Theatre. We don’t have this set-up online just yet, but you can contact us and we will pass your message onto our treasurer, Alan Capper.
If you need to know more about any fundraising activity, please contact:
Brian Woodrow Flat 5,
27 The Embankment,
Tel: 01234 349455