Derby Theatre awarded £10 million from government Levelling Up Fund

Published Tuesday 21st Nov 2023
Derby Theatre is thrilled to announce that it has been awarded a £10m grant from the Department for Levelling Up, Housing & Communities (DLUHC) towards the development of the city’s much-loved venue.

This significant funding recognises the vision of Derby Theatre which places civic engagement and learning opportunities alongside high quality entertainment for local residents.

Derby Theatre will use this funding as part of a major project to increase the performance, community, participation and learning spaces at the Theatre. Key areas for development include: a new purpose-built Studio theatre, providing an exciting and versatile new space for the Theatre to present innovative work; an improved learning space for learners and the community plus improvements to the audience experience for both the main auditorium and new Studio theatre.

Sarah Brigham, CEO and Artistic Director, Derby Theatre, said:
Derby Theatre is approaching its 50th Birthday in 2025. This funding will allow us to secure the next 50 years of high quality theatre in our city. We welcome nearly 100,000 people a year through our doors to see shows and 25,000 to take part in workshops and learning activity, so we are delighted that we will be able to use this funding to offer an even better experience to our customers and encourage more people to visit us for the first time.”

 Professor Kathryn Mitchell CBE DL, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Derby and Chair of Derby Theatre Board of Trustees, said:
“Derby Theatre plays a pivotal role in our city, and we are delighted that the Levelling Up Funding of £10m, secured by the city partnership and awarded to the Theatre, will enable it to remain in its current home in the Derbion. 

“The Theatre has a long-standing reputation of being a leading professional producing and learning theatre, and the funding will support the refurbishment and development of the Theatre’s facilities, helping to continue to enhance Derby’s cultural offering.

 “Our commitment to supporting the regeneration and long-term prosperity of the city, as well as developing its creative and cultural ecology, is part of our civic ambitions, and we look forward to continuing to work collaboratively with Derby Theatre and Derby City Council as the plans develop.”

We are currently working together with Derbion to deliver these improvements as part of a broader masterplan.

Derby Theatre: New Horizons

The overall cost of the re-development at Derby Theatre will need additional investment, and so to generate support and additional funds, we’re launching Derby Theatre: New Horizons, a campaign reaching out to local communities, audiences, businesses, friends and stakeholders from the region. Derby Theatre: New Horizons will enable us to share our plans for the future, helping us to raise funds and awareness, and galvanise YOUR support in preserving and developing our much-valued theatre for the next 50 years and beyond.  You can make a donation via the Derby Theatre website at Support Our Work – Derby Theatre. Or, to find out more about the different ways you can support, please contact Iain Hayes, Executive Director and Laura Winson, Head of Development at

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Derby Theatre: New Horizons

Derby Theatre needs your help as we launch Derby Theatre: New Horizons, a project to build a new purpose-built studio and make major improvements to the city’s beloved venue.

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