Theatrical return for Rolle College facility
- Credit: Archant
An auditorium at Rolle College has been brought back into use for the first time in nearly a decade.
The move follows community benefit society Rolle Exmouth Limited (REL) securing a licence to use the site from Plymouth University in September.
The auditorium space is being used by Exeter-based theatre company Le Navet Bete for rehearsals and set construction for its Christmas show Robin Hood, which will run for 39 performances at the Barbican Theatre in Plymouth.
REL chairman Deborah Hallet said: “It’s fantastic that this wonderful space is finally open again.
“We have worked closely with Plymouth University to secure use of the site and are delighted that the first outcome of that is to support one of the region’s biggest and best Christmas shows.
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“As a former education campus, the site has brilliant facilities perfect for a wide range of business, education and community uses.”
Le Navet Bete has a special connection to Rolle, as all five members of the theatre company are former graduates from the site when it was a Plymouth University campus, before its closure in 2008.
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Production manager Alex White said: “As soon as we heard that REL had secured use of the site, we got in touch.
“It’s a brilliant space – actually larger than the Barbican in terms of staging, so we are able to build all our sets there and run a full, daily rehearsal schedule.
“As graduates of Rolle College, we were gutted when the site closed, so to be once again making use of the space feels like we’ve come full circle to put this production together.”
Plymouth University consulted earlier this year on two proposals to redevelop the Rolle site, both of which would see most of it used for housing.
REL is aiming to secure a range of uses for all or key parts of the site, through buying it completely or working in partnership with a developer.