Regal revamp vandal blow

EFFORTS to create a bright new image for Stowmarket's Regal Theatre are being blighted by a wave of petty vandalism.The 1930s theatre suffered three smashed dressing room windows and a broken advertisement sign last week, costing £350 to repair.

EFFORTS to create a bright new image for Stowmarket's Regal Theatre are being blighted by a wave of petty vandalism.

The 1930s theatre suffered three smashed dressing room windows and a broken advertisement sign last week, costing £350 to repair.

Previously, a hooligan clambered up on to the roof of the building and snapped the letter G from the word Regal, causing £650 of damage.

Manager Marie Jacobs said the barrage of attacks is robbing the theatre of money and detracting from its appearance.

Although insured, it has to pay a £250 excess every time it makes a claim, which means it foots the bill for most of the damage.

The recent crime spree is overshadowing attempts to brighten up the facility.

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Planning permission is being sought for a £2,000 electric sign that would replace the existing plastic letters on the entrance.

In addition, a £1.4million cash windfall is also proposed that would include a café, a new frontage and an extra cinema auditorium.

Ms Jacobs said: "We're trying to make it a focal point of the town and make it as nice as possible and, as fast as we're doing that, they are coming down and smashing it up, he said.

"We're such a tight team down here and it does get you down."

It is believed the damage to advertisement sign was done by a film lover keen to get hold of a movie poster.

But Ms Jacobs said: "If people want posters all they've got to do is ask and we'll get them some.

"We give them to children's charities and schools already and if we've got one spare, they can have one. It's costing us a fortune to keep putting it right."

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