Trinity Theatre

Last updated

Trinity Theatre
Former Holy Trinity Church, Church Road, Tunbridge Wells (NHLE Code 1223642).JPG
Trinity Theatre
Kent UK location map.svg
Red pog.svg
Trinity Theatre
Location of the Trinity Theatre, Tunbridge Wells within Kent
AddressChurch Road
Tunbridge Wells
England
Coordinates 51°07′58″N0°15′44″E / 51.132838°N 0.262207°E / 51.132838; 0.262207 Coordinates: 51°07′58″N0°15′44″E / 51.132838°N 0.262207°E / 51.132838; 0.262207
Owner Diocese of Rochester
OperatorTrinity Theatre
TypeProvincial
Capacity 291
Current useTheatre, Arts centre
Construction
Opened1829
Reopened1982
Years active1982-present
Architect Decimus Burton
Tenants
Royal Tunbridge Wells Civic Society
Website
http://www.trinitytheatre.net

Trinity Theatre is a theatre and arts centre, located in the former Holy Trinity Church in the centre of Royal Tunbridge Wells, Kent.

Contents

Holy Trinity Church: 1829–1972

As a developing spa town, Tunbridge Wells was short of church capacity, and had no parish church. In 1818, the Church Commissioners created a fund to provide new churches in growing towns, for which it was decided by the residents and visitors to the town to apply for. Led by Lord Abergavenny, a subscription fund was started, which raised the £10,591 construction costs. Architect Decimus Burton (1800–1881), who had already been commissioned to design villas in Calverley Park, agreed to design the building, to a then popular Gothic Revival architecture style. Built in locally quarried sandstone from Calverley Quarry, the first stone was laid on 17 August 1827. Constructed by Mr Barrett of Tunbridge Wells, the finished church, which cost just over £12,000 to complete including fitting out, was consecrated in September 1829. [1]

Due to the popularity of Tunbridge Wells in the Victorian age, a number of churches were built in the town. Hence following the fall in congregation numbers after World War II, the town had a number of churches which were in great need of major maintenance. As the largest church in the town, it was decided to decommission it. The church held its last religious service in 1972. [2]

Derelict: 1973-1981

In 1974 the Church Commissioners declared Holy Trinity "redundant to pastoral needs," thereby allowing for its potential demolition, and redevelopment of the site as housing or offices. However, after a petition was raised by the Royal Tunbridge Wells Civic Society, the commissioners gave the society one year to find a suitable public use for the building. After approving in principle a plan to turn the building into a community theatre and arts centre in 1976, £50,000 was raised in six months, to allow a long term lease to be agreed from January 1977 with the Diocese of Rochester. [2]

Trinity Theatre: 1982-present

Supported by Tunbridge Wells Borough Council (£15,000), Kent County Council and Arts Council England, over a five-year period the internal redevelopment addressed dry rot and damaged stonework, to turn the building into a theatre with 350 raked seats. [2]

Subsequent grants have allowed developments to include a cafeteria, public bar, and redevelopment of the side vestibules to allow for art shows and local arts classes. In March 1996 an application was approved by the National Lottery for £600,000 of additional internal improvements, which provided a computerised box office, new seats, and an access ramp for wheelchair users. [2]

In its now 25-year history, Trinity Theatre has collaborated with performers and groups from Steven Berkoff to the Royal National Theatre, as well as hosting international performing arts, film and visual arts. With over 90,000 people now coming through its doors annually, Trinity is acknowledged as one of the leading arts and performance venues in the South East of England. [3]

Tunbridge Wells Theatre Club

Originally launched in 1946 as the Tunbridge Wells Drama Club, after the church became available in 1977, the club and its committee became central to the buildings revival. After the restoration of the building in 1982, it renamed itself as Trinity Theatre Club. Today it is one of the most active amateur theatre clubs in the southeast, putting on four productions per annum. [4]

See also

Related Research Articles

Guildford Town in England

Guildford is a town in Surrey, England, 27 miles (43 km) southwest of London on the A3 trunk road midway between the capital and Portsmouth.

Beckenham Human settlement in England

Beckenham is a town in Greater London, England, within the London Borough of Bromley. It borders Beckenham Place Park and Bellingham in the London Borough of Lewisham and is centred 8.4 miles (13.5 km) south-east of Charing Cross. Its population at the 2011 census counted 46,844 inhabitants. Beckenham is in the historic county of Kent.

Woolwich Human settlement in England

Woolwich is a district of southeast London, England, within the Royal Borough of Greenwich. It has been part of the London metropolitan area since the 19th century. In 1965, most of the former Metropolitan Borough of Woolwich became part of Greenwich Borough, of which it remains the administrative centre. The population of Woolwich was 84,959 in the 2011 census.

Pudsey Human settlement in England

Pudsey is a market town in West Yorkshire, England. Once independent, it was incorporated into the City of Leeds metropolitan borough in 1974. It is located midway between Bradford city centre and Leeds city centre. Historically in the West Riding of Yorkshire, it has a population of 22,408. It also lends its name and sits in the local Leeds City Council ward of Pudsey and Pudsey parliamentary constituency.

East Grinstead Human settlement in England

East Grinstead is a town and civil parish in the northeastern corner of Mid Sussex District of West Sussex in England near the East Sussex, Surrey, and Kent borders. It lies 27 miles (43 km) south of London, 21 miles (34 km) north northeast of Brighton, and 38 miles (61 km) east northeast of the county town of Chichester. The civil parish covers an area of 2,443.45 hectares and had a population of 23,942 persons in the 2001 census. The population of the town at the 2011 Census was 26,383.

Tonbridge Market town in Kent, England

Tonbridge is a market town in Kent, England, on the River Medway, 4 miles (6 km) north of Royal Tunbridge Wells, 12 miles (19 km) south west of Maidstone and 29 miles (47 km) south east of London. In the administrative borough of Tonbridge and Malling, it had a population of 40,356 in 2015.

Royal Tunbridge Wells Town in Kent, England

Royal Tunbridge Wells, previously just Tunbridge Wells, is a town in western Kent, England, 30 miles (48 km) south-east of central London, close to the border with East Sussex upon the northern edge of the High Weald, whose sandstone geology is exemplified by the rock formations at the Wellington Rocks and High Rocks. The town came into being as a spa in the Restoration and enjoyed its heyday as a fashionable resort in the mid-1700s under Beau Nash when the Pantiles, and its chalybeate spring, attracted significant numbers of visitors who wished to take the waters. Though its popularity as a spa town waned with the advent of sea bathing, the town remains highly popular and derives some 30 per cent of its income from the tourist industry.

Ashford, Kent Human settlement in England

Ashford is a town in the county of Kent, England. It lies on the River Great Stour at the south edge of the North Downs, about 61 miles (98 km) southeast of central London and 15.3 miles (24.6 km) northwest of Folkestone by road. In the 2011 census, it had a population of 74,204. The name comes from the Old English æscet, indicating a ford near a clump of ash trees. It has been a market town since the Middle Ages, and a regular market continues to be held.

Aldershot Town in Hampshire, England

Aldershot is a town in the Rushmoor district of Hampshire, England. It lies on heathland in the extreme northeast corner of the county, about 31.8 mi (51.2 km) southwest of London. The area is administered by Rushmoor Borough Council. The town has a population of 36,321, while the Aldershot Urban Area, a loose conurbation has a population of 243,344, making it the thirtieth-largest urban area in the UK.

Decimus Burton British architect

Decimus Burton was one of the foremost English architects and urban designers of the 19th century. He was the foremost Victorian architect in the Roman revival-, Greek revival-, Georgian neoclassical-, and Regency styles. He was accomplished also in the cottage orné-, picturesque-, and neogothic styles. He was a founding Fellow and, later, Vice-President, of the Royal Institute of British Architects, and architect to the Royal Botanic Society from 1840 and an early member of the Athenaeum Club, London, whose club premises he designed and the company of father, James Burton, the pre-eminent property developer of Georgian London, built. Modern architectural historians, such as Guy Williams (1990) and Dana Arnold (2004), contend that Decimus Burton's contribution to architecture has been grossly underestimated by previous architectural historians: as a consequence of the misattribution to Nash of many of his works; of his undeserved vituperation by his neo-gothic nemesis, Augustus W. N. Pugin; and of the consequent retention of his archives by his family.

Tenterden Human settlement in England

Tenterden is a town with a large conservation area in the borough of Ashford in Kent, England. It stands on the edge of the remnant forest The Weald, overlooking the valley of the River Rother. It was a member of the Cinque Ports Confederation. Its riverside today is not navigable to large vessels and its status as a wool manufacturing centre has been lost. Tenterden has several voluntary organisations, some of which are listed below, seven large or very old public houses within its area and has long distance walking and cycling routes within its boundaries.

Sutton, London Human settlement in England

Sutton is a large town, and the principal town of the eponymous London Borough of Sutton in South London, England. It lies on the lower slopes of the North Downs, and is the administrative headquarters of the Outer London borough. It is 10 miles (16 km) south-south west of Charing Cross, and is one of the thirteen metropolitan centres in the London Plan. The population of the town was counted as 41,483 in the 2011 census, while the borough overall counted 204,525.

Southborough, Kent Human settlement in England

Southborough is a town and civil parish in the borough of Tunbridge Wells in Kent, England. It lies immediately to the north of the town of Tunbridge Wells and includes the district of High Brooms, with the A26 road passing through it. According to the 2001 census it had a population of 11,124. The town is within the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

Royal Victoria Place

Royal Victoria Place (RVP) is a mostly covered shopping centre located in the town of Tunbridge Wells, Kent. The centre features a three-floor Fenwick's department store, a two-floor Marks and Spencer, a two-floor Boots and around 110 other stores, as well as a community centre managed by Tunbridge Wells Borough Council.

Somerhill House Grade I listed English country house in the United Kingdom

Somerhill House is a Grade I listed Jacobean mansion situated near Tonbridge, Kent, United Kingdom. It was built for The 4th Earl of Clanricarde in 1611–13. The estate was sequestrated by Parliament in 1645, and restored to its rightful owner in 1660. The building had become derelict by the mid-eighteenth century but was later restored. Somerhill was painted by Turner in 1811. It was bought by a member of the Goldsmid family in 1849 and greatly extended between 1879 and 1897, making it the second largest house in Kent, after Knole House, Sevenoaks.

Tunbridge Wells Borough Council is the local authority for the Borough of Tunbridge Wells.

St Marks Church, Royal Tunbridge Wells Church in Royal Tunbridge Wells, England

St. Mark's Church is the Church of England parish church for the Broadwater Down area of Royal Tunbridge Wells, Kent, England, in the Diocese of Rochester. Built in the 19th-century Gothic Revival style by Robert Lewis Roumieu, it is a Grade II* listed building.

Kent and Sussex Crematorium and Cemetery

The Kent and Sussex Crematorium and Cemetery is a crematorium and cemetery located in Royal Tunbridge Wells in the county of Kent, England.

St Pauls Church, Rusthall Church in Rusthall, England

St Paul's Church is a Church of England parish church in Rusthall, Kent, England. It is a Grade II listed building.

References

  1. "Holy Trinity". Roughwood.net. Retrieved 11 March 2011.
  2. 1 2 3 4 "About Us". Trinity Theatre. Retrieved 11 March 2011.
  3. "Trinity Theatre". Tunbridge Wells Borough Council. Archived from the original on 20 October 2011. Retrieved 11 March 2011.
  4. "Trinity Theatre Club". Trinity Theatre Club. Retrieved 24 November 2016.