The Lowry in Salford is set to become a temporary ‘Nightingale Court’, after signing a deal with the Ministry of Justice.
The new deal, which will commence from Monday 28 September, will help the Ministry of Justice help with the backlog of court cases, as well as providing a much-needed source of income for the theatre.
Through this temporary ‘Nightingale Court’, the Government will be able to help alleviate the pressure on courts and tribunals resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic. Judges will be based at The Lowry, being able to hear civil, family, tribunal, as well as criminal cases.
Due to social distancing measures, the running of theatres and productions have become economically challenging. The Lowry is the first fine arts centre in the country to have secured a contract as a temporary Nightingale Court.
The income the theatre will receive will reportedly help ensure the survival of the organisation and the safeguarding of hundreds of jobs based in Salford Quays.
Commenting on the recent news of the deal Julia Fawcett OBE, chief executive of The Lowry, said: “Like arts venues up and down the country, we simply cannot operate our building as normal in the current climate. And with no regular source of income since March, this partnership provides vital funds to enable us to relaunch our programme.
“This includes online, open-air and community performances by some of the UK’s most creative dance, circus and theatre companies as well as creative engagement activities that will improve the mental health & life chances of more than 2,000 young people in Salford.
“Furthermore, we hope to spread the benefit of this partnership across Greater Manchester by commissioning new work from local artists specifically designed for the post-COVID audience environment.”
The partnership with the Ministry of Justice strengthens the venue’s Christmas show plans. Within strict guidelines performances of the hit musical SIX and family favourites such as The Gruffalo are set to go ahead throughout the winter period.