Reports from two key leisure operators in York will be debated by the Council next week.
The Libraries now operate as an independent “community benefit society”. They receive funding of over £2 million a year from York taxpayers so it is disappointing that the report says little about the organisations financial position. Nor are KPIs tabulated. However, local libraries have maintained, and enhanced, their reputations over the last year. They are more outward looking with several – including Acomb – seeking to establish “Friends” support groups. They are also meeting the challenge of a, still expanding, technology sector.
The Theatre Royal – which is an independent trust – has had a turbulent year with performances moved to the Railway Museum while the St Leonard’s Place building was completely modernised. The work ran 6 months behind schedule which was a major challenge for the theatre’s management. Early reactions to the recently reopened theatre have been generally positive. With the Council having paid their annual grant up front to help pay for the costs of the refurbishment the theatre faces a testing few years on the financial front. The Theatre Royal is an important part of York’s cultural heritage and most residents will wish it well as it seeks to re-establish itself.