Preparations underway to open the rescued Square Chapel Arts Centre

An arts centre in Halifax that was rescued from administration is preparing to re-open when Government guidelines allow.

Friday, 23rd April 2021, 11:25 am

Square Chapel Arts Centre was saved in September 2020 after going into administration at the beginning of the first lockdown back in March 2020.

Arts At The Mill CIC became the official owners of this much-loved venue.

As the Government s roadmap out of lockdown continues to be rolled out Square Chapel Arts Centre is aiming to officially open to the public for live in person events late summer/ early autumn 2021.

Jonny Davenport, Michelle Mayor, Pete Massey(Arts Council), Becky Davenport and David Jenkins - Photo credit Ant Roblinng
Jonny Davenport, Michelle Mayor, Pete Massey(Arts Council), Becky Davenport and David Jenkins - Photo credit Ant Roblinng

Jonathan Davenport, Artistic Director said: “As an organisation we are deeply rooted in creating, producing and programming work with the community which is why the coming months are crucial. We are about to embark upon a significant programme of consultation to hear in-person what the community of Halifax wants and needs most from us.

"Along with our knowledge and experience from running our sites in Wigan, we feel we have a great chance of formulating an inclusive, relevant and ambitious plan for Square Chapel.

"It’s incredibly important that we find our place among other organisations in Calderdale and work hard to look at the whole cultural picture and not just our own activity.

"We’re mapping out existing relationships, existing organisations and setting out to play our part in the development of what we think is a fantastic region for culture.”

Arts At The Mill formed Square Chapel CIC, a non-profit organisation who worked closely with Arts Council England and Calderdale Council to ensure a smooth transition.

The centre is working tirelessly to ready both the building and team for the relaunch.

The next few months will consist of ensuring all the necessary building maintenance work is carried out, contracting and setting-up new suppliers, working with the local community and cultural organisations to establish Square Chapels role, programming work for the popular autumn season, setting-up new ticketing, box office systems, updating the website ready to go live and welcome back performers, artists and the public.

Dave Jenkins, Managing Director of Square Chapel said: “We bring strategic and commercial experience to ensure quality, sustainability and longevity. This is embedded into our plans ensuring that an important cultural asset to Halifax and surrounding areas has a future.

"We have received amazing support and encouragement from both Arts Council England and Calderdale Council who share our energy and passion for what we want to achieve.

"We are hugely excited to welcome the community and performers back in the buildings but prior to that, we are working hard to ensure that we have everything in place to do so safely and fully equipped to deliver what Calderdale deserves.”