AUTHOR PETER JAMES LAUNCHES ROPETACKLE PLAN FOR SURVIVAL
“MORE THAN JUST AN ARTS CENTRE”
A new community fundraising appeal has been launched by Ropetackle Arts Centre that trustees hope will save the much-loved live entertainment venue and cinema from closing – and international best-selling author, Peter James has been the first to sign up as a “Gold Patron.”
“As with nearly all arts venues, Ropetackle cannot survive without subsidy. Our situation is now critical to extent that we are calling on our community to support us,” Ropetackle chairman, Martin Allen, says. “We are a charity, and without such support, we face the prospect of closure.”
Best-selling crime author Peter James wasted no time in signing up to the scheme, launched today. He recalled his support when plans for establishing Ropetackle were first laid, saying: “What has been created here is ten times richer than the original vision. It is more than just an arts centre – it is a community hub.”
With the title Ropetackle 2020, and a rolling target of £30,000 per year, the appeal invites contributions at different levels:
- Gold Patrons (£45 per month or £500 single annual payment) and Silver Patrons (£10 per month of £100 single payment)
- Friends (£2 per month or £20 single annual payment)
- Donors (£10 per year)
Patrons will be entitled to reserve seating and both Patrons and Friends have the right to priority booking of certain tickets.
With audiences of over 40,000 per year and with numerous community and other activities, in the 12 years since it opened, Ropetackle has been a remarkable success story, punching above its weight in the regional arts scene. In the past six months alone, top comedians Romesh Ranganathan, Jack Dee, Alan Carr, and Peter James have entertained audiences, along with some of the biggest names in jazz, rock, blues, folk, indie and world music.
Having won several prestigious awards, Ropetackle’s latest accolade came this Spring, when it was voted Best Theatre and Arts Venue in Sussex.*
However, as Martin Allen adds: “Success comes at a price: there is the ongoing cost of running a live entertainment venue, and the complexity of its operation means we need more paid staff to support our wonderful team of volunteers.
“Ropetackle is a real hub for the community. As well as offering a rich cultural experience, we work with schools, disadvantaged groups and a number of partners to inspire everyone and help reduce loneliness. Our café is very popular, and we attract tourists to the area, with our audiences contributing upward of £1m a year to the local economy. I hope the scheme will encourage people to sign up with a view to supporting us year-on-year so that we can sustain this wonderful Centre and keep it running long into the future.”
Those interested in joining the scheme can do so online at www.ropetacklecentre.co.uk/ropetackle2020 or in person at the Box Office.
Sussex’s best soul and funk band, the South Coast Soul Revue, will be performing a fundraising gig in aid of Ropetackle 2020 on Friday 6th September at the venue. The band will be supported by two other soul acts and the fun kicks off at 8pm. Everyone is welcome. Tickets just £20.