Felixstowe: Cash set aside to pay for closure of Spa Pavilion as time running out for theatre

PREPARATIONS are in hand to close and board up Felixstowe’s Spa Pavilion – with �10,000 set aside for the work, it was revealed today.

Councillors are still hopeful that a solution can be found to keep the seafront venue open, but are having to prepare for the worst with time running out.

Fresh marketing of the theatre will not start until September because of the summer break, and – if there is any interest shown in taking it over or redeveloping its site – no decision is likely to be made until late November or December at the earliest.

Current operators Openwide Coastal are due to hand back the keys on January 11.

“If the Spa theatre requires closure before a solution can be found, the council will have to secure the venue,” said Geoff Holdcroft, Suffolk Coastal cabinet member for leisure and economic development.

“It is estimated that the associated works would cost �10,000. This amount will be covered from existing budgets.”

Mr Holdcroft said the Spa Pavilion project board would be meeting on August 29 and officers had already been asked to bring a full briefing on the way forward.

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“We cannot do anything for the next three or four weeks – that’s the reality of August and the holiday period,” he said.

“But officers have been asked to bring to the project board recommendations of how we can get the Spa back on the market from early September so we can have a good indication by the end of October as to what the market is telling us.”

He said the council would welcome a fresh bid by the Spa Pavilion Associates – the community group withdrew its bid at the 11th hour after being told it would not succeed – or as part of a partnership with other organisations.